Self-styled social magazine Flipboard has integrated Bluesky into its apps for iPhones, iPads, and Android devices. Support arrives as a beta feature just a couple of weeks after the first release of Bluesky’s code, which gives programmers access to develop using the AT protocol on which it’s built. Flipboard announced posts from open-source Instagram alternative Pixelfed — which uses the same ActivityPub protocol that powers Mastodon — will be available in its app in “the coming days.”
If you use Flipboard, then you can add Bluesky by tapping the four-squares icon at the bottom of the app and going to the accounts tab. A list of accounts should show up, giving you the option to set up a connection to your preferred social network, which includes Mastodon, Bluesky, and YouTube.
Signing in is as simple as entering your Bluesky username and password. The app yells at you if you try to use your personal password for the service as I did, urging you instead to use Bluesky’s more secure app password function to create a unique login for Flipboard. Point: Flipboard!
After you set up the integration, you can choose to “Follow” posts from individual people from your follows on the invite-only social network, get your own posts as they come, or let it just show you the “What’s Hot” tab from Bluesky, which could be the best way to get butts on your Flipboard feed, if I understand how all of this works (which is debatable).
If you want, you can even reply to, like, and repost Bluesky content you see in Flipboard, just as you can with Mastodon integration.
Flipboard is leaning heavily into open-source, federated social networks like Mastodon, which it added support for just last month, and now Bluesky and Pixelfed. Our own David Pierce and Nilay Patel sat down with Flipboard CEO Mike McCue on The Vergecast in April, where McCue chose to double down on his insistence that ActivityPub is the single biggest opportunity he’s seen since the dawn of the web, and the three discussed the reasons he thinks so.
This is the second decentralized social network protocol Flipboard has added support for, and more support is coming. The company is planning to fully integrate its platform at the protocol level in the future.