Five months after integrating fast-loading Instant Articles into the social network’s News Feed, Facebook is rolling out its Instant News platform to all iPhone users.
During The Wall Street Journal’s WSJD conference in Laguna Beach, California, Facebook’s Chris Cox, the company’s chief product officer, explained that thousands of news articles a day will now be published across Facebook in the platform’s new Instant Article format.
New partners that signed up to be part of the Instant Article program include various major media companies: Vox, Slate, The Huffington Post, The Daily Mail, The New York Times, BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, as well as a variety of other outlets.
According to Facebook’s research, readers are more likely to share articles posted through the company’s new Instant Article format rather than normal links because they load 10 times faster and are easier to read, especially when read through Facebook’s mobile application. Content shared via Instant Articles also ranks higher in Facebook’s News Feed than normal linked posts. However, publishers who have opted into Facebook’s Instant Article program have been forced to rewrite their content posting platforms to facilitate Facebook’s Instant Articles.
Rival technology companies like Apple and Google have also launched their own respective specialized article features, Apple News and Accelerated Mobile Pages, with varying degrees of success.
Facebook’s Instant Articles are marked by a lightning bolt next to them and have a visual look that’s much cleaner than standard Facebook posts. Additionally, the new format has all advertising and tracking code stripped from its content and supports unique visual features such as 3D maps and galleries.
Facebook’s Instant Article format is also being tested for Android devices.