updated 03:20 pm EDT, Sun May 11, 2014
App removal comes as company looks to future Creative Labs offerings
Facebook has pulled its Poke and Camera apps from the iOS app store, bringing an end to the apps which were launched as direct competitors to popular mobile apps such as Snapchat and Instagram. The Verge reports on the discovery of the app removals on Friday, stating that the removals come two years after the launch of the apps.
Both of Facebook's apps offerings launched to rocky starts, as the company tried to expand into the app market. Poke, a messaging client similar to Snapchat, launched in December 2012 and never quite got off the ground. Posed to send disappearing messages after a set duration like its rival, the app ended up becoming more of a joke to users and the company. Mark Zuckerberg told Businessweek in an interview that Poke was built as "more of a joke. A few people built it as a hackathon thing, and we made one release and then just kind of abandoned it and haven't touched it since."
The Camera app, on the other hand, suffered from a bout of bad timing. While generally considered a successful app from the company for its use of multiple image uploads and camera filters, it was launched in May 2012 not long after Facebook's acquisition of Instagram. The features of the app won't go away entirely with its removal, as they have since made their way into the functionality of the main Facebook app.
Most traces of the applications have been removed by Facebook. Links to the pages for the iOS app and help articles for Poke now turn up as missing entries. Facebook's page for the camera app still exists, but links to iTunes turn up results as unavailable.
Facebook confirmed the removal of the apps without further comment. The move comes as Facebook attempts to split off features from its main mobile app and looks to expand its mobile offerings through its Creative Labs division.