Facebook tests new social linking buttons

Posted on February 21, 2017


Social networking giant Facebook is currently testing out a new feature that would allow users to link their Facebook accounts to a range of other social media platforms.

It would appear that the site has started to display a number of buttons for users to input account information for rival networks, thus allowing their contacts to connect with them on a range of different platforms. These large buttons would allow a user’s entire online presence to be tracked from the one location.

The site has started to display links to a number of prominent competitor networks, including Snapchat, Skype, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and Russian platform VKontakte.

These links appear as large buttons that show up on a user’s profile, sitting in between the Featured Photos section and the menu bar containing the About/Photos/Friends tabs. This will mean that the user’s entire online presence can be accessed almost instantly. For the more social media savvy users, this is great news as they can get their friends to follow all of their accounts from the one page.

Users of the site have been able to include links to their other social media accounts in the About section of their profiles, but these are generally hidden away and are just textual links. This test would mean that these buttons are more visible to other users and easily linked to.

Company CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently published a manifesto stating that the site intends to shift its focus from connecting family and friends to “developing the social infrastructure for community” and should this test feature become a permanent one, it would certainly fit into this statement.

At present, it seems that the feature is being tested on Android and iOS versions of the app, with the tool unavailable to the desktop version. Matt Navara of The Next Web is one of the users selected for this trial and he shared a screenshot of the feature on the iOS version of the app:

Feedback from a number of the site’s 1.8 billion users would suggest that this feature has been in its testing phase for quite some time. It is still unclear as to whether or not it will see a site-wide and worldwide rollout, but it is sure to be one that will spark up more privacy concerns amongst certain users.

This is just one of several new features in the testing phase, including one called Discover that invites users to introduce themselves to people they may not know but have things in common with.

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Drawing from a broad pool of experience that ranges from university studies in English Language to his work as a medical receptionist in a busy GP practice, Alan fits right at home as Engage Web’s Operations Manager.
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