Facebook fancies itself the world’s watercooler (which is what Twitter actually is), and it’s hoping an expansion to its Trending tool will draw even more people into the conversation. That little box on the upper right is about to become a bigger part of the overall experience.
The biggest change for Trending is it’s move to mobile. Facebook has been making itself considerably more smartphone-friendly lately, with Trending following Graph Search over to its app. For a feature ripped right from Twitter, it makes sense to make it accessible on the platform where Twitter makes its living.
Along with the move, Trending is getting a makeover. Each trend now consists of a five-pronged structure of engagement, an improvement over the catch-all net approach that the old layout offered. Users are now able to view a story as covered in the news through a section labeled “Articles.” Separate sections are also available, covering posts from people in the story, content from near the scene, and what people in your own network are saying.
Facebook has also added a livestream in Trending, another very Twitter-like feature that shows mentions of the topic from around the world as they happen. Only posts set to public will appear in the feed, Facebook assures.
The update to Trending will start to pop up on Facebook in the U.S. starting Wednesday. It will be available to Android users first on mobile. For iOS and international users, the promise of support in the future will have to suffice for the time being.
Photo via edowoo/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) | Remix by Molly McHugh