Former Vine head Jason Toff is leaving Google to join Facebook, where he’ll be “starting up a new initiative under the recently formed NPE team.” Facebook just announced its new NPE (it stands for “new product experimentation”) team last week, as a brand that will be developing experimental apps for consumers who are still slightly removed from the core Facebook brand.
Toff had previously left Vine (and Twitter) back in 2016 to join Google, where he worked on VR projects and later at Google’s in-house Area 120 incubator (which is pretty similar in concept to Facebook’s NPE team). Given his previous work on smaller, new app initiatives and his time leading Vine, Toff seems like a natural fit for whatever experimental new services Facebook is working on with its NPE apps.
The news sees Toff as the first major name to be associated with Facebook’s NPE team, and it doesn’t sound like the company is stopping there. Toff noted on Twitter in his announcement that while he can’t reveal details of what he’s working on, he is looking to hire a team of UX designers and engineers to work on the project — perhaps Facebook is looking to steal some of Byte’s Vine-successor thunder?