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Never leave Facebook: Complete articles to load in app

If you’re already finding it hard to jump off Facebook, the company’s new service will have you well and truly stuck.

Facebook has unveiled Instant Articles, a new service that will make it possible for media outlets to have their entire articles hosted through Facebook servers.

Facebook Product Manager Michael Reckhow said that Facebook was aiming to make it easer for users to load and share articles by getting rid of the average eight seconds it takes to load a piece, “by far the slowest single content type on Facebook.”

“Along with a faster experience, Instant Articles introduces a suite of interactive features that allow publishers to bring their stories to life in new ways,” Mr Reckhow said.

“Zoom in and explore high-resolution photos by tilting your phone. Watch auto-play videos come alive as you scroll through stories. Explore interactive maps, listen to audio captions, and even like and comment on individual parts of an article in-line.”

Publishers will now be able to monetize their articles on Facebook, selling ads within articles and keeping the revenue. Facebook is also offering publishers the option of targeting the social media service’s Audience Network “to monetize unsold inventory.”

The New York Times, National Geographic, BuzzFeed, and The Guardian are among the nine launch partners set to start sharing complete articles on feeds from today.

“The New York Times already has a significant and growing audience on Facebook. We’re participating in Instant Articles to explore ways of growing the number of Times users on Facebook, improving their experience of our journalism and deepening their engagement,” The New York Times Company President and CEO said.

“We have a long tradition of meeting readers where they are and that means being available not just on our own sites, but on the social platforms frequented by many current and potential Times users.”

Instant Articles will certainly provide users with a more convenient way to access content across the web – without having to leave the app. The stories pre-load as you scroll towards it, so text, pictures, and videos should be (mostly) ready to go when you get there.

The service has just started, so time will tell if publishers find enough value in it to make it a success. Apart from that, there have been growing concerns as to dwindling reach possibilities available to those with Pages. Instant Articles could make it even harder for businesses with Pages to compete against paid posts and, now, articles with Facebook Audience Network-targeted ads within them.

Introducing Instant Articles, a new tool for publishers to create fast, interactive articles on Facebook.

Posted by Facebook Media on Tuesday, May 12, 2015

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Guillermo Troncoso

Guillermo Troncoso

Guillermo is the Editor of Dynamic Business and Manager of film &amp; television entertainment site ScreenRealm.com. Follow him on <a href="https://twitter.com/gtponders">Twitter</a>.

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