It seems Facebook's recent changes to its main app weren't limited to just ripping off its competition
, as evidenced by the many Twitter users who have reported being unwittingly turned into beta testers for the company's new, second News Feed. The feature, confusingly denoted by a rocket ship icon in both the iOS and Android version of the app's interface, has apparently been rolling out for almost a month now, but has flown under the radar until now.
The new News Feed is, unsurprisingly, sort of a marketing tool, aiming to get users to like new pages. Navigating to the spaceship icon brings users a feed full of posts by pages similar to ones they already like, though the algorithm is also influenced by friends' likes and post popularity as well.
Facebook has also confirmed the feature in a statement that reads: “We are testing a complementary feed of popular articles, videos, and photos, customized for each person based on content that might be interesting to them. We’ve heard from people that they want an easy way to explore new content they haven’t connected with yet.” The new feature is reportedly also available in a number of countries, though it's still limited to a small subset of users.