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Day 1 of F8 2019: Developer News Roundup

April 30, 2019ByDesiree Motamedi Ward

Today, we kicked off our annual developer conference in San Jose, California. Thousands of developers, creators, entrepreneurs and innovators from around the world gathered at F8 to learn about the latest technology from our family of apps and the future we're building together. Mark Zuckerberg opened the two-day event with a keynote on how we're building a more privacy-focused platform, and the fundamental shift we're making in how we build products and run our company. If you couldn't join us in person, or watch online, don't worry, we've got you covered — here are some of the top developer stories from the first day of F8 2019:

Introducing WhatsApp Verification Codes for Account Kit

We're releasing the SDK to integrate WhatsApp verification into Account Kit for iOS and Android. Developers can now give people the option to use WhatsApp to send verification codes as an alternative to SMS for phone number login. This has been available on the web SDK since late 2018. We're also adding two new Account Kit events and parameters to Facebook Analytics that support verification.

More details available here.

Updates to Graph API

The newest version of Graph API v3.3 includes updates to rate limiting for Pages API, Instagram, Messenger, and Ads Insights.

  • Pages API: The Page level rate limit now uses a new Business Use Case rate limiting system for Pages API. This new logic is applied to apps that are owned by a business and use either a Page or system access token. These changes apply to v3.3+, and will apply to all versions starting July 29, 2019.
  • Instagram Graph API: The Instagram account rate limit now uses a new Business Use Case rate limiting system for Instagram Graph API. This new limit is determined by analyzing the number of impressions on the Instagram account rather than by the number of users on the app. These changes apply to v3.3+, and will apply to all versions starting July 29, 2019.
  • Messenger: We are introducing a new Page control to allow a Page admin to opt into a Page messaging rate limit to prevent the Page from being transitioned into a High-mps Page.
  • Ads Insights: Changed rate limits at the ad account level to better reflect the actual volume of API calls needed. We now compute the rate limit quota based on your Marketing API access tier and the business for your app. These changes apply to v3.3+, and will apply to all versions starting July 29, 2019.

More details available here.

New Version of Marketing API Released

Marketing API v3.3 includes improvements for STORE_VISITS, which is also known as Store Traffic in Facebook UIs. With this optimization_goal we deliver your ads with the goal of driving store traffic to locations you specify by given Facebook Pages. This version also includes changes and deprecations to Ads Management, Product Catalog, and Ads Insights and Measurement.

More details available here.

Introducing New Ways to Bring Immersive Web Content into VR

Through WebXR, we're making it easier for developers and creators to create immersive content and make it available to millions of people to experience seamlessly across headsets and smartphones.

WebXR display
  • Discovering Content in VR: Starting today, you can explore the completely redesigned new tab page in Oculus Browser, which makes it easier to discover content in VR. You’ll find popular websites, immersive media and the best of the VR web whenever you create a new tab. Link your Oculus Go or Gear VR headset to Facebook and the page will highlight 360 photos and videos, along with 3D photos from your friends and the Pages you follow.
  • Save to VR: We’re introducing a new feature in the Facebook app called “Save to VR.” Now when you see immersive content on Facebook, you can easily save and revisit it later when you’re in VR.

More details available here.

Messenger Gets Faster, Adds Business Solutions

Messenger has seen tremendous growth – with people and businesses exchanging over 20 billion messages each month. Some big changes are coming to the platform this year.

Example of lead generation from Facebook Ad to Messenger
  • LightSpeed: Faster, Lighter Messenger: With this next iteration of Messenger, our goal is to keep the app size under 30 MB which will present an opportunity for developers to build new, streamlined solutions on our platform that are less limited by host devices.
  • New Business Solutions for the Messenger platform: We've built products to bridge the gap between online and offline, providing businesses unique functionality that leverages the power of Messenger. In-app appointment Booking, lead generation templates in Ads Manager, and easy authentication from links offer plug-and-play solutions that will make it easier for businesses to drive in-store traffic, generate leads, and provide customer care.

More details available here.

Announcing Major Spark AR Studio Update

Spark AR Studio now provides support for Windows, as well as new features that bring more efficiency, interactivity and control to the AR creation process. Since last year's F8, over one billion people have used AR experiences powered by Spark AR. Hundreds of millions of people use these experiences monthly across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and Portal. And all of these experiences have one thing in common: they are built with Spark AR Studio. We've also added in-product testing to Spark AR Studio which helps you to quickly test your experience in either Facebook or Instagram.

Spark AR Studio application on desktop

More details available here.

Portal Announces New Features: International Expansion + WhatsApp

Portal will launch to more countries, starting with Canada in June and in Europe this fall. In keeping with that new international focus, we’re thrilled to announce that WhatsApp is coming to Portal — and bringing end-to-end encryption with it.

Portal device with WhatsApp and Messenger end-to-end encryption

More details available here.

Oculus for Business 2.0 Platform Expands VR in the Workplace

Today at F8, we introduced the new Oculus for Business with new hardware options, starting with Oculus Quest and Oculus Go, and provide a suite of tools designed to help companies reshape the way they do business through the power of VR.

Oculus for Business

More details available here.

Oculus Quest and Rift S Pre-Orders Announced

It's official – both Oculus Quest and Rift S will begin shipping on May 21! Our first all-in-one VR gaming system, Quest delivers the freedom of completely untethered movement in VR. For those with a Windows 10 PC and graphics card suited to PC gaming, Rift S gets you into the most immersive content that VR has to offer. Both start at $399 USD.

Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S devices

More details available here.

Announcing the Facebook Developer Community Forum

Today we're announcing the launch of the Facebook Developer Community Forum designed for developers building tools and experiences using our platform. The Facebook Developer Community Forum is built with developers in mind. The forum is available for developers to ask and answer questions relating to apps and app development on Facebook.

Developer Community Forum homepage

More details available here.

We have more highlights on today's Facebook news and announcements in our Facebook Newsroom Roundup. You can also check out the keynote and sessions on demand, and get updates on F8's big moments through our Facebook for Developers page, Twitter and our Instagram. Be sure to follow the conversation with the #F82019 hashtag.