Facebook has announced a new app from the Facebook Creative Labs team. It's called Rooms.
In an attempt to inject some nostalgia into how we communicate, Facebook has essentially launched a forums app. The company, through a blog post, described the early days of the web as "magical". People could connect through forums, message boards, and chatrooms - without having to share geographies or social connections - but modern communication with phones has made the magic fade.
Facebook wants to bring back that magic, using Rooms: "Inspired by both the ethos of these early web communities and the capabilities of modern smartphones, today we’re announcing Rooms, the latest app from Facebook Creative Labs. Rooms lets you create places for the things you’re into, and invite others who are into them too," explained the social network.
Rooms is comprised of several, you guessed it, rooms, and each room has a feed of photos, videos, and text (similar to Instagram or Facebook). Whoever creates a room gets to designate the room's topic, and at launch the app already has a few rooms available - thanks to early users - such as a room for beat boxing videos and another for parkour, etc.
There's a bit of creativity with Rooms too. Creators can control all the fine details: "You can change the text and emoji on your like button, add a cover photo and dominant colors, create custom 'pinned' messages, customize member permissions, and even set whether or not people can link to your content on the web," Facebook explained, followed by a promise to add more controls soon.
One interesting feature about Rooms is that you can be anonymous, a stark change from Facebook's usual path of trying to associate every person with an online identity. You can choose to use your actual name in a room, if you desire, and you can use a pseudonym in another room (or all rooms).
Rooms is available today for iOS devices. It is limited to the US, UK, and some other English-speaking countries. No word yet on an Android version.