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Facebook launches app center

May 10, 2012|By Michelle Maltais
  • Facebook, already assured of becoming one of the most valuable U.S. firms when it goes public this month, now must convince investors it is worth the hype.
Facebook, already assured of becoming one of the most valuable U.S. firms… (Mladen Antonov / AFP/Getty…)

Those apps that have you wasting hours and annoying your friends with invitations on Facebook are getting a new clearinghouse. And some of them could soon come with a fee.

Facebook announced, "For the over 900 million people that use Facebook, the App Center will become the new, central place to find great apps like Draw Something, Pinterest, Spotify, Battle Pirates, Viddy, and Bubble Witch Saga," in a blog post.

This will be where all comers -- whether by web or mobile -- will find Facebook apps. Actually, only access through iOS and Android Facebook apps was mentioned in the post, although there is a Facebook app in the Windows Phone Marketplace as well.

"We will give developers the option to offer paid apps," the post reads. "This is a simple-to-implement payment feature that lets people pay a flat fee to use an app on Facebook.com."

Developers will have access to an app ratings metric tracking how users rate apps over time. "Well-designed apps that people enjoy will be prominently displayed," according to the post. "Apps that receive poor user ratings or don’t meet the quality guidelines won't be listed."

The addition of paid apps comes as Facebook, currently on its roadshow, prepares for its initial public offering on Nasdaq next week. The addition of paid apps through mobile, if successful, could be a solution to its primary obstacle as a business -- making money from mobile devices.

Facebook has nearly 158.9 million unique U.S. visitors who reach the site on computers and 78 million who reach it via mobile phones, with overlap between the two groups, according to ComScore.


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