Facebook tonight unveiled its mobile App Center as it amps up its efforts to improve its mobile business. A collection of free social applications for both the Web and mobile platforms.
“The app center represents a new way for users to discover social applications,” said Douglas Purdy, Facebook’s director of developer products, who showed off the App Center at a launch party in San Francisco. Plus, he says, it gives developers a way to reach Facebook’s more than 900 million users. Facebook was responsible for 83 million visits to the Apple App Store in May, Facebook said.
Each app will generally allow the user to install it as a Facebook application. However, a “send to mobile” will also appear if the app has a mobile app from either the Apple iOS App Store or else the Google Play store. In either case, the app can be sent to a user’s phone and can be installed there.
In the mobile environment, the apps will appear under their own drop-down heading, accessible from the menu button on the upper left. Facebook also separately announced new security features for the mobile platform.
Facebook’s mobile challenge — a challenge shared by most all Web companies — has contributed to the wave pessimism about Facebook’s stock. Shares of Facebook closed today at $26.31, more than 30 percent down from their offering price of $38 a share.