Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) Blog

5 of the Best Facebook Open Graph Mobile Apps to Learn From

Mobile apps that use Facebook Open Graph have two distinct advantages. Firstly, these apps are “sticky,” bringing users back by making app activity visible on their Facebook page. Secondly, these apps are easily discoverable by a user’s friends. Facebook’s Open Graph completes the loop of retaining users and acquiring new ones.  Instead of a plain ol’ text-based Facebook status, Open Graph apps hardwire unique “verbs” into an update. Open Graph stories appear in the newsfeed and ticker of a person’s timeline and allows developers to integrate the app into the Facebook experience. Here are five apps that are doing it right.


Foodspotting is a visual guide to good food that’s nearby. It’s an app that lets people find and rate food dishes. The app populates a user’s timeline with photos of their meals and action verbs about a user’s dining experience. It adds verbs like “wanted,” “tried,” “loved” and even the social media-friendly verb, “nommed,” to a Facebooker’s status update.

Two months after using Open Graph, Foodspotting saw referral traffic from Facebook quadruple and monthly active users double.


Who doesn’t have that friend who updates Facebook about their workouts? (I’ll admit, I’m totally “that girl.”) RunKeeper is perfect for health nuts because users can effortlessly announce fitness achievements. RunKeeper uses iOS and Android GPS to record workouts and tell a user’s Facebook friends about it.  RunKeeper’s Open Graph capabilities allow users to broadcast runs, hikes or bike rides to social networks using the verbs “just completed” and “Check out the run I did.”

RunKeeper iPhone screenshot

RunKeeper screenshot

October 2012 updates to the Anroid app allow users to find Facebook friends and telephone contacts who use Runkeeper and add them on the app to compare workouts.


We’ve all seen music on Facebook because Spotify has turned music into a social experience. Spotify floods newsfeeds with what users have “listened to.” Facebook friends can like, comment or even listen to the particular song in a status update.

Spotify iPhone App

After the integration with Open Graph, Spotify added half a million users in two weeks of May 2012.


For Instagram, the Open Graph action you see on Facebook is “took a photo.” When users post a photo inside the app, they can choose to publish to Facebook. A key feature to the Instagram and Open Graph integration is the built-in “like,” which connects “likes” on Instragram with “likes” on Facebook. That means Facebook users get a notification when an Instagram follower (who is also a Facebook friend) likes their photo in the Instagram app.

Mobile based referrals grew 400% from April to July 2012 for Instagram. One month after the app released the built-in “like” feature, one third of all Open Graph interactions were “likes,” which increased mobile referrals by 10%.


People can “check in” at a location and it will not only publish within the Foursquare app, but also to a user’s Facebook timeline. An update to Open Graph allows Foursquare users to tag Facebook friends while using the Foursquare app. 

Foursquare iPhone Screenshot

Interested in building your own mobile app that’s integrated with Facebook’s Open Graph? Check out our landing page to get started.

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