Facebook Gaming App Launches on Android Earlier Than Expected

An iOS version is expected soon

Mobile Android gamers waiting for some Facebook-powered game streaming can now hop on a new app, pushed out early in this time of pandemic and staying at home.

Facebook Gaming app on Android device
Original image: Geeky

Facebook pushed out its mobile gaming app to Android, making it available to users much earlier than expected. According to the New York Times, Facebook planned to release the app in June, but decided to launch early to meet the needs of stuck-at-home gamers.

Why gaming? The Times notes that Facebook claims 700 million monthly users are already "engaged with gaming content." The new mobile app will capitalize on the $160 billion global games industry, letting users create and watch live gameplay, much like Amazon's Twitch, Microsoft's Mixer, and Google's YouTube Gaming.

The app itself: Launching on Android (with iOS soon to come) will get you a few setup screens, asking you to choose your preferred language(s), which games you'd like to follow, and a list of Facebook-affiliated gaming streamers that you can curate.

Setup for Facebook Gaming app

Once on the main screen, you can Go Live with your own gaming on Facebook, reducing the friction for users to add more content for others to consume. You can see the list of games and streamers you follow, along with game-related groups you're a member of. There's also an odd activity feed that seems imperfectly connected to gaming content (there were completely non-gaming posts from some friends in our feed).

Follow Games, Follow Streamers, Main FB Gaming app page

Facebook says: “Investing in gaming in general has become a priority for us because we see gaming as a form of entertainment that really connects people,” Facebook's Fidji Simo told the Times. “It’s entertainment that’s not just a form of passive consumption, but entertainment that is interactive and brings people together.”

She also added that the company has been seeing a big rise in gaming during quarantine, which prompted Facebook to move faster on this and other gaming projects.

Bottom line: Android gamers wanting to get in on the action can head to Google Play to download the app; iOS users will have to wait, but it's likely it won't be too long.

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