Apple’s forthcoming software update for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch will make it a whole lot easier for Facebook members to post to the site. But does that put you (or your friends) in danger of oversharing?
During Apple’s keynote at the Worldwide Developers Conference on Monday, Senior Vice President of iPhone Software Scott Forstall announced that the company’s mobile iOS 6 software — in beta now — will feature deep Facebook integration .
Here’s how it works: After upgrading an iOS device to the latest software, Facebook will appear as a setting inside iOS 6. Users who sign-in to Facebook via iOS will have access to the social network within many most-used apps including calendar and contacts.
If you opt to sync contacts, events and birthdays from Facebook, this information will populate on your mobile device. For example, your Facebook friends’ birthdays will show up in your iPhone calendar.
Other features include uploading your Facebook location information right from Apple’s new Maps app, and posting a game score from Game Center.
But since iOS users stay logged in to the Facebook, they might end up oversharing photos, updates and geo-location tags because it’s that much easier. The simple solution, of course, is to monitor what’s posted to Facebook and keep it under control.
The Apple-Facebook collaboration is not entirely a surprise. Not only did Apple’s previous iOS 5 software include Twitter integration , Apple CEO Tim Cook’s recent suggestion to “stay tuned” about his company’s relationship with Facebook indicated that there was a partnership on the horizon.
The move to integrate Facebook into iOS has been in the making for quite some time. As Mashable previously reported, internal politics at Apple and Facebook nearly derailed the entire effort last year .
Sources close to both companies have told us that in the last six months, both sides have worked hard to smooth out the relationship, with the understanding that the partnership is in the best interest of both companies.
The move is also a jab at rival Google, giving Apple iOS users more incentive to use Facebook rather than Google+. The news also comes as Apple pulled the plug on Google’s Maps app, which typically came bundled with iOS devices. Apple announced yesterday it would be rolling out its own custom Maps app.
“Yesterday’s announcement from Apple is great news for Facebook users and iOS and Mac OS X developers,” a Facebook spokesperson told Mashable in an e-mailed statement. “With deep integration throughout iOS and OS X, people will have new ways to share and connect and it becomes easier for developers to integrate Facebook into apps and games.”
Facebook integration will eventually come to OS X Mountain Lion — the latest version of Apple’s Mac software — in the fall. However, Mountain Lion will officially launch in July.
Facebook users with iOS or OS X Mountain Lion will be able to link their accounts to the iTunes Store or the App Store to see what their friends are downloading. This is also a big advantage for app developers who can look for Facebook-connected accounts to gain access to information, rather than having to sign in again through Facebook.
This is already how things work with Apple’s Twitter integration, which was launched last year in the company’s iOS 5 upgrade.
Judging by the existing iOS integration with Twitter, this will be a big win for both Apple and Facebook. In fact, the number of Apple users who also use Twitter tripled following the parternship. Meanwhile, about 10 billion tweets have been sent via iOS 5, and nearly half of all photos posted to Twitter come from an Apple device.
Do you think this is the start of a long-lasting partnership between Apple and the social network? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Christina Warren also contributed to this report.
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