Facebook’s New Rocket Ship Feature Will Probably Give You Deja Vu

Because Facebook and Instagram are pretty much the same thing these days

Facebook's New Rocket Ship Feature Will Probably Give You Deja Vu

by Jazmin Kopotsha |

Facebook really likes to keep us on our toes, and we never have to wait very long before there's a big old update to the social media platform. We went live, we were given Stories (again) and we can now sell the stuff we don't want anymore without so much as having to open up Gumtree. Up next on the ever-growing list of Facebook developments, though, is a feature that will probably give you a mild case of deja vu. Because no feature is sacred in the social media world, guys.

A few people have recently started to notice a little rocket shaped icon chilling at the bottom (or top, if you're team Android) of their mobile Facebook apps. If you have it, you'll find it on the menu bar right next to the icons for friend requests, marketplace and notifications.

And there are only so many things a rocket could mean, I suppose. Space travel is the obvious one of course but it’s a bit too soon, even for Facebook, to integrate some sort of intergalactic Uber service to their repertoire. The not so obvious meaning for such an icon, though, is a second news feed. But that's indeed what they've gone with.

The idea is that the rocket feed works in the same way as your Explore feed works on Instagram and Twitter. According to TechCrunch, it's the latest in Facebook's experiments in giving it's users access to an alternate News Feed. In the new feed you'll see stuff that Facebook thinks you might like based on pages you've already given the thumbs up or things that your mates are reading/watching/into. So, yes. Very much like on Insta.

Facebook have actually been toying with this idea for a while, apparently. Similar versions of the feature were rolled out for a select group of people who had opted into beta testing earlier this year. But the teeny tiny rocket icon has started popping up for lots of users over the last month or so without a heads up, hence all the confusion about what it actually does.

A spokesperson for Facebook explained to TechCrunch: 'We are testing a complementary feed of popular articles, videos, and photos, customized for each person based on content that might be interesting to them. We've heard from people that they want an easy way to explore new content they haven't connected with yet'.

I'd assume that because so many users have started to spot the not so secret second news feed on their phones, it won't be too long until we all find ourselves with access to some sort of Facebook Explore, which (besides the fact that I'm convinced that ever single social media app is slowly but surely merging into one) can't be a bad thing. Wider, easier access to the news and views going on outside of our own little bubbles is something we could all do with every once in a while.

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Follow Jazmin on Instagram @JazKopotsha

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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