The Facebook app has, at this point, sort of become infamous in the Android community as the source of all evil: the app is generally criticized for being slow, it’s known that it frequently causes wakelocks. and the memory consumption is all over the place. However, due to the popularity of the service and the fact that a lot of us rely on it to talk to our friends, it’s still one of the most used and downloaded Android apps ever made. But, what if there was an alternative? Well, today we’ll show you just that, with Fast for Facebook.
Fast for Facebook, which you can download for free here, is a nice alternative to the official Facebook app, and it offers pretty much the same set of features and possibilities, as long as you want to install the necessary addons and accept the right permissions. Besides the obvious benefit of being a faster, lighter Facebook client, the app also excels in the visual department, with a design that is a bit Material inspired for sure, but still manages to do its own thing. Let’s take a look:
First of all, when you open the app, it will ask you to log into your Facebook account and accept all the right permissions. Once you do that, you’ll be able to use the app and you will see this screen when you log in:
After that, there will be a small intro about the app, and there are a few options that the app will ask you to set up in advance:
So just pick the layout that you think makes more sense considering your screen, and then go to the next screen, where you will be asked for a color scheme:
Again, just pick the one you like the most, and then you will be taken to the app’s main screen:
As you can see, the feed and timeline get the most focus, with any content that includes video or pictures displayed side-by-side with the commentary or share, which is a nice way to take advantage of the available space. Pressing the three-dotted menu next to a publication allows you to do the expected things. Alternatively, you can also tap and hold over the publication to get the same options:
The app also offers options to see your notifications and messages, although these may require you to individually set up those permissions. In any case, the app should ask you to allow it to access and manage your permissions. Once you accept, you will be able to see and reply to your notifications right from the app, just as you expected. This also applies to things like messages or groups and events. Everything requires you to approve it at least once, and then the app will be able to access, display and manage your data:
Overall, this is a great app and the fact that it’s lighter in resources and generally more well-behaved in comparison to the official app makes it a no-brainer if you’re looking for alternative apps. A lot of people have also chosen to drop a dedicated Facebook app altogether and instead access the mobile web interface to use the service these days. That’s not a bad choice either, but it’s lacking in features in comparison to the official app and I also find that it disrupts my typical usage, since I don’t get notifications or alerts in real time, only when I’m logged in. So, this app is a great choice instead.
I also really like that the app is modular and allows you to individually select which components you need to use and which permissions do you feel comfortable with. There are optional addons for real-time push notifications and a standalone Messenger component as well, if all you want to do is chat with your friends. That means you can sort of customize the service to your liking, making it easier to use and lighter on your resources, because you don’t have stuff you don’t really need going on in the background.