Facebook Paper breathes dynamic new life into your timeline

Facebook Paper is now available for free in the US and drastically changes the way you interact with Facebook, but in a good way. It brings with it beautiful full screen photos and status updates, a gesture driven design, and all new ways to curate your content based on what you care about most.

Paper is the first large project to come out of Facebook Creative Labs and if this is a sign of what's to come, it may be very good news for Facebook fans. Fans of apps such as Flipboard that have a more magazine style layout will also be drawn to Paper more than the native app. Since it specializes in curating content and grouping it into areas that make it easier to sort, it somewhat turns your Facebook timeline into a news feed of sorts.

Even though the main difference between Paper and the existing Facebook app is curation, the design is completely different as well. Instead of lots of menus to tap on and weed through, Facebook Paper cuts all of them out in favor of a completely gesture driven interface. Swipe between status and photos, swipe up and down through cards or to open news articles and links. This has been one of my pain points with the official Facebook app for a long time. I can't go back and forth very easily without accidentally pulling out chat or another menu I didn't mean to access. Paper solves this in a much more elegant fashion.

Since Paper is a completely new way of experiencing Facebook, there are gesture hints to get you started and if Paper thinks you're lost, it gives you a tip on how to use gestures to navigate through the app. So far I've found everything gesture wise to be spot on to what I'd expect from flicking statuses away to pulling down to access additional menus.

News is another area Facebook is trying to curate on your behalf, even outside your Facebook timeline. Just choose the types that interest you and Paper presents them in a card on its own. It's a much more thoughtful solution than the current way Facebook just randomly feeds in thinks you might like in the current app. You can grab it now via the link below as long as you're running iOS 7.0 or higher.

If you happen to try out Facebook Paper, let us know what you think of it in the comments. Will you be deleting the original Facebook app or keeping it alongside Paper? Let us know your reasonings too!

Have something to say about this story? Leave a comment! Need help with something else? Ask in our forums!

Allyson Kazmucha

Senior editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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Reader comments

Facebook Paper breathes dynamic new life into your timeline


LOVE IT!!! Already replaced the Facebook app! Facebook did something right for the first time in a long time. I have to thank Reddit for the link.

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Me too. Once I downloaded the app the regular Facebook was deleted. I jut wish it was iOS-only, not iPhone-only.

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Me too. Once I downloaded the app the regular Facebook was deleted. I jut wish it was iOS-only, not iPhone-only.

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it's only iOS7 compatible. I wish you would state that in your review so us non-iOS7 users dont get all exited for nothing...

Anyone figure out how it shows your feed? Most recent? Most popular? Seems mine is a mix of things. Or is there a setting I'm missing?

No i don't see anything other than randomness. which is ok for me, i don't check Facebook enough to care about most recent. It's all new to me :P

The web interface has been nonlinear for ages now. I don't think we'll be seeing that style of timeline again on Facebook.

Dear Lord I was hoping that was going away or at least give us the option of setting my feed one way or another by default every time I open the app. I prefer most recent because I really don't care about seeing the same crap I saw a week ago just because people keep liking or commenting on it Isn't there enough other people who want this too? Fail.

Just downloaded it. Really great looking and uncluttered. Definitely will be using this instead of the ole Facebook app. Is this to eventually become the official app? Like that I can scroll across instead if the endless scrolling down. Also themes are a great idea. So far so good.

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Why is that? I think the last report I read was that 80 percent of devices have been updated to iOS 7. It costs more money to develop apps with backward compatibility.

they're still producing updates for the regular app

ios7 still has too much visual pukeness for myself and 1 in 5 users to update to

yeah i've met many a person that updated just because they got a notification and regret it. They don't pay attention to tech news so they had no idea a drastic change was coming.

I was waiting for this since they announced it! Love it, everything is so fluid and makes Facebook enjoyable again!

I've only just downloaded it... But initial impressions are good... I only wish you could make it the default app tho...

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For me, this is better than Flipboard. But I gave up on Flipboard a while back in favor of Zite. And so far I like Paper a lot more than Zite as well.

I'm in Vancouver and got so fed up with not being able to download US only content, I created a US iTunes account. Downloading the app now.

Actually quite awesome. So I guess this means that other developers can use the word "face" or "book" in their app name without getting sued now, since I think the app of the year last year was Paper?

Is there an option to add say.. imore to the tech news feed? I like the interface. I just want to add specific sites I like instead of only random genres. Did I miss the setting?

Hopefully this will be added in a future update! I hope they read these comments. I would love to add specific websites; iMore would definitely be on my Facebook paper!

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Love it! Definitely made me enjoy Facebook again. Has replaced the native app. Hopefully we can see Facebook combine the apps in the future.

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It's completely awesome! It's a lot faster than the Facebook app and much cleaner. A nice news reader alternative blended with my fb timeline. Well done Facebook. Deleted Facebook app and kept Paper

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Just downloaded it and I'm loving it so far. I'm still at work so the real test and play time will come later. I'm so excited!!

I love it but my only problem is it doesn't have accessibility features like voiceover and how to accommodate blind their blind users like myself and other people with disabilities

Can they do this for Android? They have too, right?

If they deliver the Android version soon, imagine how much time they lost delaying this masterpiece for iOS.

Comparing to xCode+iOS APIs+device uniformity+usage, Android is so poor.

I don't know if they can even make such thing in the next few weeks.

Google must do something to improve the situation.

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Create a US iTunes account like it did. I'm in Vancouver and just downloaded it. Its actually a pretty slick app. Loving it already.

I tried to do this but it asked for my credit card. It wont workb because it is a canadian card. wont they pick up that im not from the states?

This certainly looks fantastic. My wife is the resident Facebook user, I'll have to let her know about this and see what she thinks. :D

Really good app... I'm not a big Facebook User but I might be back to normal usage... The app has a great UI and the "tutorial" or "help" is very nice. I deleted the old app, I prefer gesture based apps. (Depending what kind of app).

It basically happened what I got on Twitter... Changed the TW app for Tweetbot, looking for a better experience and I got it on both.

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I would seriously delete my old Facebook app, but the ONE problem is the new Facebook paper doesn't have a buddy list thats shows whose online or not :( :( :(

Not available in my app store yet, but if there's no way to display feed posts in chronological order (as stated above) I'm not interested. The randomness of FB's regular newsfeed drives me nuts. I also need access to Groups.

Love it too. Live in the UK but created a yank account to download. Very nice

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Like it so far. Seems like the comment section could be a little bigger. Other than that, fairly easy to navigate.

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Wow, seeing a lot of positive feedbacks from the comments here. Can't wait for it to be available in my country.

Usually everyone is quick to dismiss everything related to Facebook, these days...

The app must be stunning.

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I like the app. I had to create a bogus FB account to use it(I don't use FB). Hopefully they add the ability for us to add our own data sources.

I'm ditching flip board, it needs a new design.

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I am going to delete the old Facebook app. I love Flipboard and it seems to want to compete in that arena. UI is really nice hope some of these design cues come to the desktop browser version of Facebook.

The concept is great, but I have only been using the app for forty minutes and already have some complaints. First, while the app allows you to "curate" your feeds by selecting card that give specific topics feeds, such as the news, which it calls Headlines. As a history and political science student, I was really looking forward to looking at this section, but after some examination I have found that the headlines are very skewed to the left. Why aren't there any conservative media sources? Do they hide other viewpoints too? So I tried to find out if there was a way to customize where each card looked for the news, and there isn't any way to do that. So while they say you can "curate" your news feed, really it is only giving you what they say is important in the topics they provide. And they say you can choose what cards you want to add, but there is no way to make your own cards. The only ones you can use are the ones they've prepared for you. That's not true curation. I like the concept, but if Facebook really wants me to use this app, they will make the feeds much more customizable and not so "as is." It doesn't matter what beliefs or ideas you subscribe to, if you don't allow for all voices to be shared, then you really don't deserve the attention that you want.

I may be missing something, but if you go to a friends page, how do you post on their page. All I see is to private message them but you cannot do a post of add a picture. You can comment on anything they have, but cannot do a regular post just to their page like the regular FB app.

Very slick but I won't ditch Flipboard until I get more control with the news feeds. Once it's goes there then it'll be killer.

Paper is really beautiful, and I think I will be using it more and more. The Facebook app seems to have gotten worse and worse (maybe bloat).
I agree with a lot of other posters about the annoyance of Facebook's obsession with a non-linear timeline. I don't want someone's two-week old post to pop up because their friend liked it. But other than that, Paper's tips are useful and design is great!

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