Next to the home tab will be a new “feed” tab which will not contain any suggested content, but will instead allow users to see the most recent posts from friends, as well as the groups and pages they follow. In the feeds tab, users can also create a “favorites” feed to filter the friends, pages, and groups that interest them the most.
Both tabs will still contain ads, according to the company. And other tabs users are used to, such as Facebook Watch and Groups, will remain the same.
“We understand that you may want more options for sorting and viewing your content,” the company said in a statement. “There are times when you might know exactly what you’re looking for – for example, the latest posts from your groups – or maybe you want to discover fresh and entertaining content.”
For years, Facebook and its sister platform Instagram have been accused of copying popular new features from rival platforms instead of innovating their own. Instagram Reels, which Meta is now trying to integrate deeper into Facebook, are nearly identical to TikTok videos (in fact, when the feature first launched, many users simply uploaded TikTok videos to Instagram, with the rival logo). The platform updates also appear to be an attempt to emulate TikTok’s success in keeping users hooked by showing them recommended content, although Facebook appears to want to give users the choice to engage with the new direction or continue to use the platform as they always have.
Meta is transitioning to a company focused on a future “metaverse” enabled by augmented and virtual reality, rather than social media. But it must continue to derive profits from its existing platforms to finance investments in this vision.
The new feed tab will start appearing in Facebook’s shortcut bar for some users on Thursday and is expected to roll out globally sometime next week.