Facebook is apparently testing its own search engine that will run on its mobile app.
It’s being reported that some iOS users have spotted an “add a link” option next to the usual buttons to add photos, locations, and feelings on the Facebook app.
At the heart of Facebook’s early search engine experimentation is a simple fact: sharing web links on a mobile device is a clunky experience.
TechCrunch is reporting that by searching for a keyword, Facebook’s new search engine will supply links to relevant websites and news articles to add to your status updates.
It seems as if Facebook’s way of handling search queries is to prioritise fresh articles that have already been heavily shared. Apparently, Facebook has indexed over one trillion posts so that its users can search for links that have been shared with them.
In other words, this new search engine will provide results that Google cannot.
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Facebook has confirmed that it is indeed “piloting a new way to add a link that’s been shared on Facebook to your posts and comments.”
At the moment, the feature only appears to be available to a small group of users in the US. Expect it to expand well beyond this limited pilot, however, with Facebook keen to keep the bulk of your web usage on its service.