updated 08:00 am EDT, Thu September 29, 2011
Facebook may time iPad and Spartan for event
Facebook's reported plans to launch its iPad app next week might be joined by Project Spartan. New claims early Thursday had the social network planning to roll out both next week. The TechCrunch tip suggested Facebook could be on stage at Apple's October 4 event to show its app and Project Spartan's HTML5 features in iOS 5, but it was reportedly determined to unveil them on Monday if Apple couldn't them in the schedule.
The two projects have reportedly been intertwined and won't launch without each other, although how much they integrate is a mystery. Both are known to have Apple's approval as both support for the iPad and a way of promoting HTML5 over Flash.
Project Spartan itself was spotted by the same site exposed on an official Facebook developer page late at night. It shows the same familiar top navigation anchor seen in July and tells developers how to establish bookmarking for apps, searching apps, and what happens when a notification of an invite goes to a third-party app.
The documentation was clearly recent as it recorded statistics of 350 million users accessing Facebook on mobile devices every month. It also references Timeline, showed just last week at f8. As such, it's likely to be a guide for what could go live next week and reflect most of what will be present.
As understood, Project Spartan is poised to be a platform for HTML5-native apps primarily for iOS and Android that would allow for apps much like those on Facebook's web page without having to use Flash or other plugins. Companies like Facebook's mainstay Zynga are believed to be involved. Despite it potentially taking downloads away from the App Store, Apple is believed to approve simply to demonstrate that Flash isn't needed on iPads or iPhones.