15 Free, Fun Facebook Features & Apps
Don’t tell me you still think Facebook is “only” for connecting with old and new friends? My friend, you’re mistaken! There is a tidal wave of Facebook apps arriving every day. Jump in and you’ll discover something new, useful, or fun. Plus, there are many unexplored corners of the site itself that you may have overlooked.
So, let me introduce you to 15 free, fun Facebook features and apps.
I selected these apps and features to highlight specific areas of your life: Communication (online and offline); Entertainment (Movies and Music); and a grab bag mix in the “Life” category, too (Food, Books, Design and more).
Before we start, you may also be required to give each app varying permissions to access your data. If you’ve enabled secure browsing with Facebook (so the URL starts with https://), you may be asked to disable this security feature for some of these apps. During installation, click “Skip” if you do not wish to share certain information with a particular app.
Some E-Cards (App)
“When you care enough to hit send” is the tagline of Someecards, a resource for hilarious e-cards you can quickly send to anyone on your friend list, or just post to your own wall for a laugh. Careful, though: Some of these cards are NSFW (not safe for work), and your mother may or may not approve…
Video Calling (Feature)
Calling your friends via video chat, right there in Facebook? Yes, it’s possible. Have an (almost) face-to-face conversation for free using your computer’s webcam. It’s the next best thing to sci-fi teleportation.
Facebook Mobile (Feature)
If you have a smartphone (iPhone or Android), take Facebook with you, for free! Hit the link above and make the connection. You’ll be notified via text right away of friend requests and can message friends while you’re away from your computer. Fine-tune the settings to suit your notification preferences (and remember: Don’t answer these while you’re driving!).
Know how you feel when you see a movie that reaches out and grabs you? You want to tell everyone you know. That’s how I felt when I saw Man on Wire in 2008. With Flixster you can recommend movies to my friends, collect films you’d like to see, and watch trailers. A subscription gives you the ability to instantly download or stream entire films on your computer, iPad, or smartphone. (Right now, you can redeem your first film for free!)
Gone are the days when you needed an entire production studio to capture, edit, and share video clips. Download Viddy for free and easily edit clips or add production-quality special effects. The one-click “share” button distributes it to your friends.
One RPM (App)
If you’re a musician (or know someone who is), download this free app right away. It gives the musician the power to share and sell their music via Facebook. It’s a great way to promote music and build a following; and even better, the musician keeps 70% of every sale (far more than what traditional record labels pay!).
Spotify is simply the best way to listen to music online. Adjust your privacy setting to post your play list publically or rock out to that not-so-well-liked artist you love without any of your friends knowing.
Imagine watching high-definition music videos customized to your musical tastes. Vevo makes it possible and makes it easy to uncover new and emerging artists, too. Create your own playlists and share them on Facebook, or sit back and watch uninterrupted videos.
Indie musicians, rejoice. BandPage does the heavy lifting of a band promoter and puts the power in your hands. Use BandPage to create a customized promotional page on Facebook featuring playable tracks, photos, and upcoming shows. The real power is how easy it makes it for fans to share your music and videos on their timeline, multiplying your audience reach.
Today is the day to act on that desire to become a disc jockey. Use Turntable.fm to broadcast your set list in real time to your friends on Facebook. The real fun is spinning tunes in a virtual room of strangers; they have the power to vote your music choices. You can skip the door fee and get immediate feedback on your mixing—you’ll be kicked you off if you’re terrible, or gain new friends if you’re not.
It’s no secret that books are better when you share and discuss them. Use the Goodreads app to make book recommendations and compare notes with friends. It is fun to discover what topics are trending amongst your peers. It can also provide that extra motivation you may need to finish that classic you never managed to actually finish in high school or college; after all, you’ll look so, well, smart!
Your most fashionable friend has a secret weapon: Pose. Install the app on Facebook and with a few clicks set your fashion style. Then, use the app to serve up daily inspiration from the closets of celebrities or other friends. Snap a few pics and share your style with any other Pose user. You won’t want to get dressed without it.
Love design? Love shopping? This is the Facebook app that will shower you with the most stylish and innovative products that make both so much fun. A recent example was a line of reflective clothing for road-warrior cyclists that you can wear on and off the bike. Use the Facebook Fab app to serve up daily design inspiration at prices up to 70% off of retail.
Time to get sweaty! You need a personal trainer to kick you in the rear and help you burn off all those sitting-on-Facebook hours. Here again your network of friends can help. Install the Endomondo app to stay accountable to your workouts and track your fitness progress, too.
Facebook Credits (Feature)
Hyped to find and try more Facebook apps and features? You can discover virtual games and more apps (each for a small fee) at this Facebook page. Give or redeem gift credits, too.
What new app is exciting you?