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Facebook unveils a faster, overhauled iPhone app

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(Read caption) Facebook has released a new iOS app. Here, the Facebook app is shown on an Apple iPhone.

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Facebook has overhauled its iOS app. 

In a post to the Facebook blog, Mick Johnson, a product manager at Facebook, said the new app runs twice as fast as previous versions. "We’ve rebuilt the app from the ground up, so now the app opens much faster and your news feed and notifications load right when you open Facebook," Johnson wrote.

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In addition, he added, photos will load instantly – so no more waiting around while your iPhone or iPad boots up an image. 

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Facebook has attributed the increased speed of the app to the use of the Apple iOS 5 software development kit, or SDK – Facebook had previously relied on HTML 5, which had been panned as "freakishly slow." In an interview with All Things D, Johnson of Facebook seemed to agree. "Problem is, HTML5 is a technology that, while promising in the long run, isn’t able to deliver the type of speed and performance we expect right now," Johnson said

You can download the rejiggered Facebook app at the iTunes Store or by clicking this link, which will allow Facebook to send you an update automatically. 

In related news, Facebook stock hit $19.69 last week – a new low. According to Businessweek, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is now worth $10.2 billion, down approximately $10 billion since the social network first went public.

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