Last month, Facebook picked up the team behind Pieceable Viewer, a mobile service that allows iOS app developers to demonstrate their apps in a Web browser. Prior to that, the world’s leading social network had already scooped up Instagram for a whopping billion dollars.
It’s no surprise that Facebook has adopted a mobile-first strategy in the last couple of quarters. Last month, the company gave a sneak peek into how it plans to leverage this acquisition by launching an Instagram-ish Facebook Camera app. It also unveiled the ‘App Center’ – an app discovery tool for native and web apps that utilize Facebook integration in some way.
In another move to strengthen its mobile talent pool, Facebook yesterday announced that it has acquired the team behind mobile app design company Spool that specializes in mobile bookmarking and sharing content for smartphones or tablets.
The sad part though – Spool is shutting down its site and I’m now being forced to look for another service to import my Spool bookmarks
Interestingly, this is the second ‘acq-hire’ that Facebook’s made in recent times. Much like its deal with Pieceable Viewer, Facebook will not acquire Spool or its assets. Spool was co-founded by Avichal Garg, a former Google product manager, in 2010, to allow users to save, or “spool,” content from their desktop Web browsers and then have it transmitted to their mobile devices for later viewing. The startup gained popularity in September 2011 after debuting at TechCrunch Disrupt.
The Spool team was planning to soon launch a social discovery feature which lets users follow other Spool users and download what they are recommending. It’s believed that Facebook will leverage Spool’s development team to improve the overall user experience on its Android and iOS apps. Last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that the mobile transition of Facebook is a challenge for the world’s most popular social network, because the user experience is so much different on mobile devices than personal computers.
“We started Spool to make content easy to consume on a mobile device. To accomplish this, we built some very sophisticated technology and developed a deep expertise in mobile software development. We firmly believe that solving these problems will be increasingly important as the world accesses the Internet primarily through mobile devices,” the start-up said in the post. “We are proud to announce that today we will be pursuing our vision as a part of Facebook.”
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.