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Facebook finally rolls out Timeline

Facebook is finally rolling out its long-awaited Timeline feature. The first country to receive the update to the world’s largest social network, announced in September, was New Zealand.

According to an update on Facebook’s official blog, “over a million people have signed up for the developer beta to access Timeline”. The beta was initially designed to service developers looking to build apps on the platform.

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A number of ordinary Facebook users, however, took to the beta after their interest was piqued by the initial announcement of Timeline.

The social networking giant says it will be using the wider roll out to “measure speed and other types of performance”.

Although Facebook’s initial blog post said that Timeline wouldn’t be available “for a few weeks”, the rollout is much later than was originally anticipated.

The delays were reportedly due to a number of technical glitches. According to Mashable, one such glitch allowed people using the developer beta of Timeline to see who had unfriended them.

Facebook launched Timeline with the promise that it would be “the story of your life”. According to founder Mark Zuckerberg, Timeline represents “the heart of your Facebook experience, completely rethought from the ground up”.

Although much of the Timeline experience revolves around mapping your past activities on Facebook, it also claims to offer a real-time experience.

The full rollout of Timeline means users will be able to make complete use of the social apps developed through Facebook’s Open Graph.

These applications will, among other things, allow users to share and discover music, movies, books.

The introduction of Timeline will also allow users to make use of Facebook apps which automatically share to chosen friends what users are doing or experiencing online without needing to click “Like” or “Share” buttons.

The biggest partnership in this regard is with online streaming music service Spotify. The union was forged in order to allow Facebook’s users to listen to their friends’ music while browsing their news feeds.

The partnership has been particularly beneficial to Spotify, which has added some 8-million users since the launch.

The slew of changes saw a number of privacy complaints. Zuckerberg has, however, dismissed such claims suggesting that “public is the new social norm”.

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