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Innovation

Facebook accused of copying MyPad's iOS app

Facebook recently updated its iOS app and added iPad support. It turns out the new version looks a lot like MyPad's iOS app.
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Written by Emil Protalinski on

Facebook yesterday updated its iOS app to version 4.0, adding support for the Apple iPad, among other things. Designer Josh Hollywood took a look at Facebook's new app and immediately took to Twitter.

Hollywood wasn't impressed. He sent out these two messages:

It's ironic that the mobile site works so much better than Facebook's app, which is now just a fancy wrapper for the mobile site.

I knew Facebook's new layout looked familiar. Facebook: http://twitpic.com/6yhv2e MyPad: http://twitpic.com/6yhv7d

You can see Hollywood's comparison screenshots at the top of this article, for the iPhone and iPod touch version of Facebook's iOS app. TechCrunch took screenshots for the iPad version of Facebook's iOS app, which you can see below. In both cases, MyPad is on top and Facebook is on the bottom.

This is not the first time Facebook has been accused of copying a mobile app. Just last month, after Facebook updated its iOS app to version 3.5, Twitter accused Facebook of stealing its iOS app design.

Here's what I ended the article with:

In Facebook's defense, both designs reflect a respect for the iOS standard constructs, including placement, sizing, and coloring of the icons. Nevertheless, the screenshots do show a remarkable similarity. What do you think?

The same conclusion applies here: it's very difficult to say if Facebook blatantly copying or if it is just following Apple's standards. In both cases, Facebook's design makes sense and it's difficult to envision a significantly different one.

See also:

Editorial standards

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