The latest big social Platform news comes from Bebo, the third largest social network in the US with 40 million users, who yesterday officially announced their Open Application Platform. The most notable part of the launch is that Bebo will be supporting both Facebook plus OpenSocial as "standards" and that the Facebook team has been helping them adopt their platform for the past few months. According to a good summary from TechCrunch's Mark Hendrickson the platform won't be open to new developers for a couple of weeks. In the meantime we have created our Bebo API Profile listing here and will be adding more details as it becomes available.
Some key points:
- Facebook Platform support: Facebook's CTO Adam D'Angelo is quoted in the Bebo press release: "With Bebo's implementation of Facebook's open standards, developers can expand their reach, which will lead to even more application development, and ultimately benefit both Bebo users and Facebook users." Having this level of compatibility means that many of 10,000+ Facebook applications may be quickly ported to Bebo.
- OpenSocial support coming in "early 2008".
- 40 partners are launching applications initially including many of the leading Facebook app providers like RockYou, Slide and iLike.
- Technology pieces include what they call SNQL, or Social Network Query Language (Facebook's has FQL), and SNML, or Social Network Markup Language (Facebook has FBML).
- Like most plug-in style API platforms they will have an application directory
- Bebo has also implemented "quality control features" like a user controlled ratings system, the ability for users to completely block applications for being "spammy" and to communicate with Bebo why they are blocking them.
- Applications running on Bebo will be able to interact with the same application running on Facebook (as for a game or other interaction).
Along with LinkedIn's API announcement earlier this week the universe of social network APIs continues to rapidly expand.