Facebook launched their “Creative Labs” project almost two years ago. The project allowed Facebook employees to form small teams to create new, standalone apps intended to “support the diverse ways people want to connect and share.”
The project was responsible for the creation of several apps – however, none of the apps really seemed to take off, and as a result, the project was officially shut down yesterday morning.
The Creative Labs project introduced its first app in January of 2014 with Paper, a full-screen news reader fueled by the Facebook News Feed. Slingshot, which was more or less a Snapchat clone followed soon after.
Eventually Riff, an interesting video app that allowed users to collaborate with friends to stitch together a video, and Rooms, which attempted to re-create the internet chat rooms of the 90’s, made their debuts.
Unfortunately, none of the apps that spawned from the Creative Labs project really gathered much of a following – they were seldom updated, and they sat on the shelf gathering dust. Perhaps due to the lack of success of these apps, it appears as if Facebook has shut down the project.
As of Monday morning, the webpage for Creative Labs has been pulled from Facebook’s site. The Slingshot, Riff, and Rooms app have all been pulled from the App Store and Android’s Google Play store, as well. According to CNET, a Facebook spokeswoman confirmed the removal of the apps, adding that Facebook has “incorporated elements of Slingshot, Riff, and Rooms into the Facebook for iOS and Android apps.”
The original app spawned from the project, Paper, is still available, however, as is Moments, which allows its users to collaboratively create photo albums based on shared experiences together.
Facebook has, in the past, introduced and shut down a number of apps. Facebook Camera, a standalone photo app built to rival Instagram was short lived, as was Poke, Facebook’s original Snapchat clone.
Representatives from Facebook mentioned, however, that the company will continue to experiment with designing and creating new apps, and will still support a number of the apps they have already introduced.