Facebook is the largest online social network in the world with over 2 billion monthly active users. Many people access the network via its smartphone apps, but they are notorious for causing battery drain and taking up a huge amount of space on users’ devices.
The good news is you can replace the official Facebook and Messenger apps with a number of alternative apps that will still provide a fully-fledged experience on Facebook without all the battery and performance issues.
Here are some alternatives you should check out below. Feel free to mention your favourite one in the comments!
1. Friendly for Facebook
Not only does Friendly provide a great Facebook experience, it also adds Facebook Messenger support so you can chat with your friends and view their status updates in the same place! It allows you to customise your newsfeed by hiding statuses and posts containing certain keywords or prioritising updates from a close friend. It also comes with a built-in ad blocker for those pesky ads, but enabling this feature requires a paid $1.99 upgrade.
2. Metal for Facebook and Twitter
Metal is a light (just 3MB) third-party alternative to Facebook, and it comes with support for Twitter, too, in the same app! Metal simply enhances the experience you’d get when accessing Facebook via a web browser with features like notifications, distraction-free mode and a floating window which allows you to keep your Facebook feed always within sight. You also have the option to select a custom theme for the app, use Night mode or just keep the default Facebook Blue.
3. Folio 2 for Facebook and Messenger
Folio is a wrapper around the Facebook mobile website with several interesting addons. It allows you to customise how frequently you want the app to check for updates and even set quiet hours when you do not want to be disturbed such as when you’re at school or at work. You can hide friend suggestions and create a four-digit passcode for the app to prevent unauthorised access. Other options include themes, photo and video download, and night mode.
4. Simple for Facebook
Simple for Facebook is yet another wrapper for Facebook mobile with all the basic features you expect from the mobile site along with support for Facebook Messenger. It also sports several other options to customise your experience on the app, including the ability to remove ads, but many of these are only available in the pro version which costs $1.49.
5. Swift for Facebook Lite
Swift offers up a nice balance between giving you full functionality and not eating up your phone’s resources. It also combines the original Facebook app with the Messenger app and claims to use no more than 20MB of RAM in the background. It doesn’t have the most impressive feature set of the apps on this list, but it does its job nicely and is well worth a try.
All these third-party Facebook apps allow you to replace the resource-hungry official apps with lightweight ones for a better overall experience.
There are several more Facebook apps on the Play Store but we can’t list every one here. If we missed out on some great third-party alternatives to Facebook, do tell us about it in the comments section below.
This article was first published in Oct 2014 and was updated in Oct 2017.