Software

Facebook F8: The breakdown for IT pros

Amid its data privacy controversy, Facebook made a few pushes into the enterprise at its annual developer conference.

Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:
  • Facebook made a few enterprise-focused announcements around Workplace, Messenger, and more at its 2018 F8 conference.
  • Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg seemed to be selling the platform to developers after the company dumped many of its APIs.

It's no secret that Facebook's current standing with the public is controversial at best. Despite the ongoing conflicts around its data privacy practices, Facebook moved forward with its annual F8 developer conference in San Jose, CA on Tuesday.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressed the issues in his keynote, saying that Facebook had "real challenges to address," but that it needs to "keep that sense of optimism" and has a "responsibility to move forward." That "moving forward" often entailed new products and services showcased at F8.

To address the concerns of individual users, Zuckerberg announced a Clear History feature that may help alleviate some of the privacy woes that come with using the platform. However, the firm also addressed the enterprise in a variety of ways.

SEE: Social media policy (Tech Pro Research)

Here are some of the major takeaways for IT pros from Facebook F8.

Facebook is panicked about losing developers

Following the initial revelations of Facebook data being leaked to Cambridge Analytica, and the legal process that ensued, Facebook began scrambling to shut down aspects of its platform that could be abused. One of the biggest steps the firm took was to shut down many APIs after an update to its developer platform.

At F8, Zuckerberg addressed the problems caused by the shuttering of the APIs and pleaded with developers to keep building on the platform. "I know it hasn't been easy being a developer these last couple months, and that's probably an understatement," Zuckerberg said during his speech before thanking developers and announcing that Facebook would be re-opening app reviews.

Facebook hasn't given up on Workplace

Remember Facebook's enterprise collaboration platform Workplace? Well, it seems that the firm is continuing to invest in the product, announcing new integrations during F8.

As noted by our sister site ZDNet, popular enterprise tools like Microsoft Sharepoint and Atlassian's Jira will now be able to be used on top of Workplace. With the new integrations, the hope is that businesses can better share information, track activity, and automate common processes.

"We want to be the place where work happens," Julien Cordorniou, vice president of Workplace, told ZDNet.

Messenger may be Facebook's best business tool

Facebook has hundreds of thousands of bots and developers working on its Messenger platform. And to improve the capabilities of the platform and better target businesses, Facebook is adding augmented reality (AR) and artificial intelligence (AI) to Messenger. Companies will now be able to send AR-laden marketing messages, and AI will be used to automatically translate messages in Marketplace.

Oculus Go could lower barrier for enterprise VR

The Oculus Go is a self-contained, standalone wireless virtual reality (VR) headset announced at F8. The headset only costs $199, and its setup app works with iOS and Android phones. While it isn't very powerful, the low price and easy setup could make it a good option for enterprise pilots, or large-scale business deployments.

See the full review of Oculus Go at our sister site, CNET.

Also see

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Image: James Martin/CNET

About Conner Forrest

Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.

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