Facebook unveils mobile enhancements

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Facebook unveiled various mobile enhancements, including a deals component, on November 3.

The social network launched a deals service that will help merchants push deals to existing customers and attract news ones, said Tim Kendall, director of monetization at Facebook. The company partnered with several companies on the deals service at launch, including The Gap, The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and The North Face.

Launch partners are offering deals, such as a free pair of Gap jeans at check-in or free screenings for Facebook fans that attend Alamo movie theaters, to a limited number of users.

Another new component is “Single Sign On,” which allows consumers to sign into Facebook and partner applications, such as Groupon, at once. Facebook partners will also launch on-site buttons, which will take consumers to the social network without requiring them to log in again.

“The goal is to save you time for what you have to do to get you more quickly to what you want to do,” said Eric Tseng, lead product manager at Facebook.

Other marketers partnering with Facebook on Single Sign On include Zynga, Loopt, Yelp, Flixter, Booyah and Scvngr.

About 200 million consumers use Facebook mobile products, said Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, during a live-streamed event. He noted that mobile usage of Facebook has tripled since last year.

“Our goal is to make anything social,” he said.

The social network also launched three location-based APIs, Places Read, Write and Search. Consumers can read where friends are, write and publish “check-ins,” and search for relevant places.

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