Apple’s Facebook snub has a backdoor

Feb 16, 2012
2
Apple’s Facebook snub has a backdoor

Facebook has again been snubbed by Apple, rival social network Twitter getting picked for deep integration in OS X Mountain Lion, though unlike with iOS there's still room for Zuckerberg to sneak inside. Just as iOS 5 included broad Twitter support across the iPhone and iPad platform, Mountain Lion natively supports the short-messaging service but leaves Facebook on the outside. However, while the huge social network might not be there out-of-the-box, Mountain Lion does give it another way to jump onboard.

Apple calls its system Share Sheets, and while as standard they offer Mail, Messages and AirDrop, if you log into your Vimeo, Flickr and Twitter accounts in System Preferences, you can also use those services too. What Mountain Lion offers that iOS 5 doesn't is a broad range of APIs that allow third-party services to hook into exactly the same sharing options as Twitter, Vimeo and others get natively.

Using those APIs, Facebook could easily add its own "share on Facebook" option to the list, which would likely show up whenever users attempted to share links, photos, video or text. Share Sheets only offer compatible routes depending on what you're trying to share, so if Facebook didn't support it, the social network wouldn't show up.

Of course, all this would involve Facebook swallowing its pride and building OS X integration itself, though since the company offers official apps for iOS despite being snubbed from native integration, we've a feeling it won't let that stop it. Full details on Share Sheets - and the rest of Mountain Lion - in our full preview.


Must Read Bits & Bytes