Facebook is trying to transform its News Feed into more than just a hotbed of baby pictures and Buzzfeed quizes and its first move is a new side panel to help users discover more timely content.
To make the app more relevant for the way people use tablets, Facebook for iPad is adding a new channel on the right-hand side of your news feed featuring trending topics, videos and tons of game suggestions to try to get users to read more news, watch more videos and play games in the app. And you can bet there will be plenty of ads to compensate.
The new feature is rolling out to all Facebook for iPad users in the US starting today. Rotating your iPad to landscape mode will reveal the new column that also features birthdays, events and other info.
Newly added sections include Trending topics based on what your friends are talking about or Facebook overall. Trending videos are also being added with the option to personalize recommendations based on what people your age and location are watching.
Facebook isn’t giving up on games yet either. The company says 70 percent of iPad users also played a Facebook-connected game within 90 days, so the company created a dedicated section for games people play. “My Games” will display titles you’re already playing with a deep link to the app in Facebook, while the new Popular Games section will recommend games based on what your friends are playing.