I love Facebook Mobile via text messages

facebookBuilding a mobile application that works really well is hard. In general, I think we put up with sub-standard mobile applications simply because they offer convenience, not because they blow us away. The iPhone is definitely changing things but for the most part, I still cringe when I need to use most mobile apps. Especially ones that claim to work over text messaging. There’s only one SMS app that I really like – Facebook.

I think Facebook has absolutely nailed the text messaging experience.

Use it for a while, and you’ll realize that the SMS functionality of Facebook is so much better than everything else. Take Twitter, for instance. One of its original claims to fame was that it worked well over SMS. Except that compared with Facebook, it absolutely sucks.

Here are a few of the reasons why Facebook over text messaging rocks:

  • You can do many different things. You can update your status by prefixing your message with the @ symbol, or write on someone’s wall by prefixing the message with “wall Name”. Similarly, you can send messages by prefixing with “msg Name”.
  • Facebook will ask for clarification. If I send a message prefixed with “wall Kim” it will ask me which Kim I mean if it can’t figure it out automatically.
  • Context! Let’s say someone sends me a Facebook message, which I have set to come to my phone. All I need to do is reply, and it will send a Facebook message back. Same goes for wall notifications. I don’t need to specify the “msg” or “wall” because Facebook understands the context.
  • Taking that to the next level, Facebook over text messaging is “multithreaded”. By that I mean, there is more than one number. If I get two messages, they’ll come from different shortcodes, so that when I reply Facebook knows which one I am replying to.

The key difference between Facebook SMS and other applications, is that idea of a session. The way that my reply to a notification is not isolated – Facebook understands some of the context around it. It makes the whole experience so much better.

Another major plus with Facebook over text messaging is that it’s both fast and reliable…unlike Twitter. I’ve never had any problems with it – it just works.

If you don’t already make use of Facebook Mobile, I encourage you to give it a shot. You can learn more about the SMS features here.

  • http://blogs.blogosphere.ca/mig14 Megan

    Actually, when someone writes on your wall, and you reply, it replies as a message.

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  • http://blog.mastermaq.ca Mack D. Male

    It did for me last time Megan…because I prefixed it with “wall” and my post on their wall started with “wall”.

  • http://blogs.blogosphere.ca/mig14 Megan

    Yes, and if you reply direct (without a prefix), it’s a message. Which is kind of dumb, actually.

  • Michael

    google also has one of the best mobile apps both with 466453 (GOOGLE) and 48368 (GVENT). GOOGLE will return simple facts as a form of text message. For example, sending “movies tropic thunder 85719″ will return showtimes and theaters in Tucson, AZ; “wheater 85719″ will be weather; “HON” will be Honeywell stock; and “arizona wildcats football” will be the score of the last game, the current score if the game is still going on, and the next game for the Arizona Wildcats.

    Also, GVENT will add events to your Google calendar.

  • http://blog.mastermaq.ca Mack D. Male

    I totally agre Michael…I wrote about Google SMS here: http://blog.mastermaq.ca/2008/06/21/extremely-handy-google-sms/

  • ramesh

    very good

  • Mike

    I need help because when i respond to someones status update and they reply back, i dont get their reply through my phone anymore, or their friends who also replied to the status update. this just started happening yesteday. i checked all my settings and my texts are turned “on” and everything but i dont know what the problem is. please help.

  • Stan

    Im getting access denied when i text to facebook.

  • kareen

    i can text my status and everything on facebook, but i cannot recieve notifications at all. why? how can i slove this problem?

  • aidan

    @kareen go into account settings on facebook and go to the notifications tab and check in the boxes under sms for what u want to be texted to ur phone

  • Tinkerbell842006

    I would def like 2 know the answer to this question also (about how to REPLY back to a comment) that was posted as a result of your Status …Sure the phone text msg says to “reply” to post, but when I “reply” then it actually posts it as a totally NEW Status update & then it looks off b/c its not under the “comments” section of the original Status that I’m actually Replying to… The whole dam thing is JACKED up if ya ask me!!! LOL so if anybody know this, pls advise.

  • Chris Ethan

    I am totally agreed to

    Mack D. Male. I also wrote about

    Facebook Mobile here: http://mordo-crosswords-solution.blogspot.in/2014/07/text-message-status.html

  • Chris Ethan

    This is the awesome feature of Facebook I tryed this and HERE is my views about Text Messages.