Facebook has official apps for iOS and Android. The Facebook app on Android is, frankly speaking, crap. How does Facebook planning on making its Android app not crap? By getting its employees to use Android.
In the world of companies and corporations, there is a concept called “dogfooding”. Dogfooding is when companies have their employees, either by force or otherwise, test the products of the company. This allows the company to gain internal feedback regarding their products, with the end goal being to improve. Facebook is employing the dogfooding strategy to try to improve its Android app.
Facebook gives its employees the choice of an iPhone or Android phone. In the past, Facebook has primarily been handing out iPhones, presumably because that is what their employees want. However, since August 2012 Facebook has been encouraging its employees to switch to Android in an effort to improve the quality of Facebook’s Android app. The idea is the more Facebook employees use Android, the more ways they will be able to come up with to fix their Android app. Facebook has recently stepped up this effort of switching employees from iPhone to Android, even going so far as to use handy dandy posters, e.g. the posters you see in the above image.
You must be wondering why exactly Facebook wants to improve its Android app. The reason is really simple — marketshare. iPhone is indeed a very popular phone but, when looked on an aggregate global scale, Android is eating Apple’s lunch. Indeed the latest stats show for every iPhone being sold, five Android phones are. With Android clearly dominating the smartphone market, Facebook doesn’t want to lose users due to a poor Android app… especially when you consider how aggressively Google is pushing Google+ to Android users.
Honestly, a few years ago I would have found Facebook’s effort to migrate iPhone users to Android to be futile due to iPhone superiority. However, in today’s world Android is offering excellent smartphones — some may even argue better than iPhone. So I don’t see Facebook having much of an issue pushing its employees to Android. At least not the geeks; I don’t know about those marketing fools.