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Facebook review

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There is a mobile version of Facebook but you need to know there’s something new to bother looking at. You can get Facebook by email already, but not status updates (and they’d fill up your mailbox).

The dedicated BlackBerry Facebook application is ideal for keeping up with friends and the latest version, 1.6, adds more features to the already excellent integration (like putting Facebook events in the BlackBerry calendar and Facebook contacts in the BlackBerry addressbook).

As you’d expect, Facebook for BlackBerry lets you post updates and see status updates from all your friends, but you can also choose to see ‘Highlights’ – photos they’ve uploaded or been tagged in, groups they’ve joined, changes to their profile and comments they make to other friends.

It’s nice that these don’t load until you ask for them, so they don’t fill up the page when you’re just wanting to see what people have to say. Click on photos to see them in the BlackBerry media viewer, with thumbnails of other images in the album along the bottom; you can see the comments on photos and leave your own, which takes you back to the Facebook app.

You can upload photos you’ve taken on your BlackBerry by picking existing images in the Facebook app or by choosing the Upload to Facebook entry it adds to the camera application, and can even tag friends in a photo; click on a face and start typing the name (Facebook pops up a list of matches to save you scrolling through everyone).

You can also see someone’s most recent status in the list of friends where you can phone or text message them. It’s handy to have phone numbers for all your friends right there (as well as in the BlackBerry address book automatically) and even handier that you can see if someone is getting on a plane or settling down to do some work before you try to call.

This is also where you’ll find the rest of the features hidden away.

The tabs at the top of the app take you between status updates, notifications from Facebook, photo uploading, the friends list, inviting a friend to Facebook, writing on a wall and sending a message, but you can do a lot more – from opening a full profile to poking people. Click on a name for the full list of options, which includes syncing someone to your BlackBerry address book manually if you know they by another name.

There are still some things you’ll want to visit the Facebook site for, like event invitations, and you can’t throw sheep or take quizzes or use most Facebook apps through the BlackBerry application. If you just want to stay in touch with friends and family and not waste time on the games you might actually prefer using Facebook this way because you won’t get distracted.

Facebook info

Ease of use:
Value:
Features:
Overall

Platform: BlackBerry

Version: 1.6

Price: Free

Developer: RIM

Website/Demo: Facebook website

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