Facebook Testing Built-In Browser on Android App: Report

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Facebook Testing Built-In Browser on Android App: Report

Facebook, after being in news for testing the ability to post stickers in comments, is now said to be testing its own built-in Web browser for the Android app.

According to a report by Android Police, several users after the most recent Facebook for Android update (issued in India on Tuesday) noticed the app opening external links from their timeline and news feeds in its own built-in browser window.

Android Police notes the built-in browser seen by users is probably a WebView component in Android used by several other apps. The WebView component is based on the Chromium open source project and uses the WebKit rendering engine to display webpages, apart from including simple back, forward, zoom, and search functions.

The screenshots of the built-in Facebook browser seen by some users in the recently updated Android app feature a menu button on the top right corner, which includes back and forward buttons, and options to Share in New Post, Copy link, Open with, and Save link options.

Since Facebook has not provided any official comment on the issue, it remains uncertain if this feature will be rolled-out to all users. As to why Facebook may attempt to bring a built-in browser to its apps, the reasoning is quite straightforward - the more time Facebook ensures users spend within the app, the more money it stands to make with ads.

Facebook on Tuesday confirmed that it is currently testing the option to post stickers while commenting on a post. Notably, these stickers have been only Facebook Messenger exclusive until now.

The confirmation came from a Facebook spokesperson when asked about the issue. "We are running a test which allows you to add a sticker to a comment on Facebook," replied the spokesperson.

The users can add the sticker in the same way like they do in the Facebook Messenger app. The sticker button is placed besides the camera button in the comment bar. On clicking the sticker button, the option would expand with a number of default stickers and other sticker packs purchased by the user.


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