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Facebook tests Pinterest-inspired interface

Some Facebook users may be feeling a bout of déjà-vu while browsing the social network's new Open Graph app stories layout. The updated interface, currently under testing, is highly reminiscent of social corkboard site Pinterest.

Inside Facebook reported Thursday that the new design makes app stories more prominent in the user's news feed by building boxes for individual items, and allowing Likes, comments, and other actions. Clicking on the photo directs you to a third-party page or website, much like Pinterest users find when pinning items.

For now, it is only being rolled out to a small number of users, so don't keep refreshing your news feed if you don't see the changes. It also seems to have been implemented for photo-heavy apps only.

"We're always testing new Platform features," a Facebook spokeswoman said. "But we have nothing further to announce."

A Pinterest spokeswoman declined to comment.

App-specific actions are part of the redesign. As Inside Facebook pointed out, by clicking on Foodspotting stories, a user could "want a dish" directly from their news feed, without being redirected to away from Facebook.

Open Graph apps include Ticketmaster, Foodspotting, TripAdvisor, Sound Cloud, Rotten Tomatoes, USA Today, and, interestingly, Pinterest. The new layout seems to be applied to music streaming apps like Loudlee, as well, according to Inside Facebook.

The Open Graph integrates websites and resources like music playlists, recipes, and athletic achievements into Facebook's Timeline, News Feed, and Ticker.

Pinterest was named the third most-popular social network in the US, right behind Facebook and Twitter, in an April report from Experian. Traffic to relative newcomer Pinterest increased almost 50 per cent between January and February, bringing in nearly 21.5 million visits during a one-week period at the end of January. The site launched in March 2010, gaining swift popularity by helping users discover recipes, kids' activities, wedding ideas, fitness plans, and more.