Facebook: One Mobile Site to Serve Thousands of Phones


Mobile Facebook users – unite! Facebook is excited to have started rolling out a major upgrade to their mobile site – delivering the best possible mobile Web experience no matter what device you’re using. Previously, the problem was solved by building multiple versions of mobile Facebook: m.facebook.com for less feature-rich mobile devices and touch.facebook.com for touch devices.

According to Facebook there were two major problems with this approach:

First of all, “We were limited by the lowest common denominator for each site. We couldn’t use JavaScript and had device specific file size limitations on m.facebook.com. Supporting a wide array of touch phones of varying quality on touch.facebook.com limited our ability to use modern CSS and JavaScript APIs.”

And secondly, “Every time we launched a new feature, we had to build it multiple times across different code bases: once for facebook.com, then again for m.facebook.com, touch.facebook.com, and in native applications as well. Honestly, we weren’t very good at doing this, so certain features were missing on different devices.”

Now, every device uses the same framework. This way Facebook can move even faster and build new features just once for every mobile device. This means that everyone can access the same features – whether writing messages or checking into Places – by being automatically served the best version of the site for your mobile device.

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