Since the dawning of its Open Graph back in 2011, Facebook has been encouraging users to not only provide status updates but to check in to locations, activities, entertainment and even feelings. Now an update to Facebook’s apps, announced Wednesday and rolling out over the next few weeks, enables users to take advantage of their microphones and automatically check in to TV shows, movies and music.
The optional feature, when enabled, will listen to noise around the user and detect media from a catalog of movies, TV and music. When turned on, the app will listen automatically to noise — meaning that it can actually identify media while statuses are written. When shared, friends can access a 30-second preview for music, a link to the Facebook page for movies and a listing of the episode name and number for television shows. A representative from Facebook said that the company has partnered with media companies to provide the information for more than 150 live TV channels as well as up-to-date listings on new movies and music.
Check out the feature in the video below:
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The accuracy and latency of the feature depends on the relative noise of the room: it will be much easier for Facebook to detect media in a quiet living room versus a crowded bar. But the feature is designed to not drain battery and will quit listening once the status is posted or canceled.
This feature looks relatively minor in the grand scheme of Facebook updates, but when seen in tandem with the company’s recent testing of check-in cards, it becomes more interesting. By taking advantage of passive technology and automatic input, Facebook is further encouraging users to share what they’re doing with their friends at a specific moment in time. Removing that friction means that users will likely post more, and in turn more friends will interact with that content. It’s a subtle, but necessary step in changing how frequently and completely users post to Facebook.