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Facebook SDK 3.0 Beta for iOS

July 11, 2012ByJason Clark

We’re happy to announce a major update to the Facebook SDK for iOS that makes it easier and faster to develop Facebook-integrated iOS apps. We’ve also introduced a new iOS Dev Center so you can quickly access the tools and resources you need to build great social apps for iOS.

SDK features

The new features make the SDK a natural extension of Apple’s iOS environment and make your development cycle more efficient by eliminating the need to develop and manage common tasks. This SDK update is fully backwards compatible with our previous SDK release. Here’s a rundown of the new features:

1. Better user session management: In the past, managing auths, user sessions and tokens was hard. We've spent a lot of time working to make these takes easier for you. This release introduces FBSession, which manages, stores and refreshes user tokens with default behaviors you can override. It uses the block metaphor to notify your app when a user's token changes state.

2. Ready-to-Use Native UI Views: This SDK release includes a variety of pre-built user interface (UI) components for common functions. You can quickly drop them into your apps instead of building each one from scratch or using dialogs. This gives you a fast, native and consistent way to build common features.

  • FBProfilePictureView lets you display a user’s profile picture.
  • FBPlacePickerViewController allows users to query the Facebook Places database to find nearby options and check in.
  • FBFriendPickerViewController, with single and multi-selection options, enables users to easily select friends. This supports filtering friends by device type and application authorization status.

3. Modern Objective-C language features support: With Automatic Reference Counting (ARC), you no longer have to spend as much time on memory management. Support for blocks means that it’s now more straightforward to handle sessions and calls to asynchronous Facebook APIs. This, along with inclusion of key language features like idiomatic API naming and KVO, allows you to transition seamlessly between the Facebook SDK and Apple’s iOS environment.

4. Improved Facebook APIs support: We have enabled batching for SDK requests to significantly improve latency for Facebook API calls, which translates to much faster access times for API requests. Support for strongly typed Objective-C types for graph actions and objects makes programming against the social graph more concise and easier. This combined with our action publishing API makes it easier to publish Open Graph actions to people’s timelines.

iOS 6 Integration

After iOS 6 launches to users, the SDK will automatically use the native Facebook Login in iOS 6 when available. Just enable Login with Facebook and the SDK will ensure your apps work seamlessly on all iOS versions 4.0 and later. The SDK will continue to support the iOS 6 integration in beta until Apple’s user launch later this fall.

iOS Developer Center:

Our new iOS Dev Center will help you learn the basics, get access to the tools you need and understand the key concepts. You can quickly get answers to commonly asked questions – from getting started to building advanced features. The new content includes:

  • Getting Started: Get up and running with the SDK in 6 simple steps.
  • Tutorial: Walk you through building a Facebook-integrated iOS app.
  • Concepts: Learn the basics of building and growing your app with Facebook.
  • Reference docs: Start coding with our documentation and sample code.

Start developing today to take advantage of these powerful new tools and resources. Please share your feedback with us on Facebook's StackOverflow page with the tag: Facebook-iOS-sdk.

Download the SDK beta with iOS 6 integration now.