Facebook Gets Desktop Notifications for Mac

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Facebook now boasts a desktop client for its Mac users desperate to get more in-touch with their notifications. Basically it serves as a Facebook app that keeps you up to date on your profile without you having to check your mail every five minutes or repeatedly refresh a page.

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While it might not seem like much, the integration is what’s really impressive. The Facebook notification bar sits quietly in the top menu-bar (beside applications like Adium, Caffeine and Tweetie). From there it slides out notifications in a fashion that will be very familiar to anyone who currently uses Growl for Adium or just about anything else. Things only get stranger the more you look into the app though.

One of the things we’ve long thought was a pronounced difference between Facebook and Twitter was that Facebook moves at a pace that, by Twitter’s standards, is pretty glacial. That’s not a bad thing, the two just move at different speeds, which is to be expected, they are, after all, entirely different services. What’s interesting about this desktop application is that it allows users to set a hotkey that will always bring up the “New Status” box, allowing users to update statuses on-the-fly, in a fashion far more similar to Twitter.

Moreover, it’s not the first move Facebook has made in a Twitter direction, as the accidental early launch of Facebook Lite indicated. While we doubt that Facebook and Twitter are ever really going to go head to head, it seems like these kinds of moves are bringing the two far closer together. The only real issue is that Facebook isn’t really geared to take on Twitter at its own game yet, and trying to do so could serve only to alienate users.

If you’re interested, you can grab the desktop notification app straight from Facebook.

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