Facebook Closes Creative Labs Mobile App Incubator
Facebook closed its Creative Labs this week, ending the internal mobile software incubator started just two years ago.
With the closure, Facebook put an end to several apps, including Slingshot (a messaging service similar to Snapchat); Riff (a group messaging app); and Rooms (an app for sharing theme-based short videos). Facebook says aspects of those apps were incorporated into the Facebook app.
The closure reflects the shift in Facebook's strategy away from developing separate apps, according to the Silicon Valley Business Journal. Instead, the Menlo Park-based company is adding features to its mobile social media platform to help it compete with other social media apps. Last week, Facebook launched "Live," a user-based live video stream with real-time comments that helps Facebook better compete with Twitter.
Meanwhile, Facebook's Oculus VR virtual reality startup is reportedly seeking more space for expansion in San Francisco even as it prepares to start shipping its first virtual reality headsets in the coming year.
The company will continue to support some applications that came out of Creative Labs, such as Paper, which is similar to Flipboard. [SVBJ]