Until recently, there can be little doubt that mobile link sharing consisted of a clumsy combination of app switching along with copy & pasting.

However, in an effort to enable more people to easily post links, Facebook is testing an in-app keyword search engine that lets you find websites and articles to add to your status updates.

Alongside buttons to add photos or locations, a number of iOS users have been provided with an “Add a Link” option.

All they had to do was type in a query, and Facebook will show a list of matching links which you may wish to share, allowing you to preview what’s on Facebookthose sites, and let you tap one to add it to your status with a caption or share statement.

The results seem to be sorted by what users are most likely to share, highlighting recently published sites that have been posted by lots of people.

A Small but Important Change

Whilst some Facebook users noticed a seemingly small change to their iOS app, this ‘small’ change could be a game changer for Facebook.

While updating their statuses, in addition to options for adding an image, tagging a friend, picking just the right sticker, or sharing their locations, they saw a new icon.

“We’re piloting a new way to add a link that’s been shared on Facebook to your posts and comments,” a Facebook spokesperson confirmed to WIRED.browser-773215_1280 Simply put: This is Facebook’s in-app, in-house search engine. And it’s a potential nightmare for Google.

For more on this story, please visit – http://www.wired.com/2015/05/facebook-add-a-link-search/

Creating a Captive Audience

Whilst in the big scheme of things, the current process for sharing a link may not seem to be too bad, for Facebook this is considered to be a real problem due to the fact that much of that time is spent outside of Facebook itself. In most cases, in fact, it’s spent with Google.

It’s not very hard to see why this is a problem for Facebook. The social network would rather you not spend time anywhere else at all, except possibly on Messenger, which is still Facebook, and therefore no problem.

Losing who knows how many engaged minutes to Google, a competitor for the mobile ad revenue on which Facebook has hinged its future, presents an even more significant frustration, especially when those users are presumably just heading right back to Facebook eventually anyway. It’s throwing money away, like running the world’s most popular bar but sending people next door if they want to order an IPA.

For more information on this story, please visit – http://techcrunch.com/2015/05/09/share-without-leaving/

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