Facebook's Group app is almost no more. The company announced yesterday that iOS and Android users will no longer be able to log in after September 1st. Instead, they'll have to use the Groups feature on the Facebook mobile app or in their browser.
This is slightly ironic given that Facebook says it loves Groups. The company revised its mission statement earlier this year with a specific emphasis placed on Groups. The new driving Facebook message is: "To give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together." This will primarily be done through Groups, the company says.
Facebook reports that 1 billion people around the world are active members in groups. Facebook values the idea that these people rely on Facebook to build a community. As such, it's developing tools specifically for them. Now, for example, group admins have more access to metrics, like growth and engagement, so they can better sort through membership requests, schedule posts, and remove abusive users and their comments.
We don't know how many people primarily interact with groups through the dedicated app, but they'll now definitely have to directly access their personal Facebook page first. Before, they might have been able to circumvent their timeline, but those days are gone. Facebook wants Group users, who it says help build the platform's social fabric, to come to the actual Facebook homepage instead of jumping straight to their favorite place.