Facebook’s Instant Articles are a surprisingly nice feature, allowing mobile users to quickly load up articles much faster than accessing them through Facebook’s built-in browser. However, publishers had to team up with Facebook to get access to the special Instant Article creator that allowed for those speedy load times. But Facebook will soon open up that article creator to anyone.
Starting April 12, during Facebook’s F8 conference, anyone will be able to build an Instant Article with their own text, pictures and video. Publishers like BuzzFeed and the Washington Post have been creating Instant Article versions of their content since the fall, with the Post publishing 100% of their articles in the format alongside traditional formats.
Facebook has made creating Instant Articles as easy as possible for publishers, using languages already in use across the web and allowing for integration into existing content management systems. The social network and advertising giant has already documented its open standard, so publishers can look into implementation details now to prepare for the April launch.
Facebook isn’t alone in creating fast-loading articles for the mobile web. Google is also working on a stripped down article format called Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP. That project is supposed to launch this month and quickly load pages found through Google searches. That separates it from Facebook’s approach, which is only available in the Facebook mobile apps.