Look for Facebook to keep turning its services into standalone apps

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Facebook Messenger being cleaved off from the full Facebook experience and turned into its own app was only the beginning, according to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Zucky told The New York Times that his company's Creative Labs is hard at work "unbundling the big blue app."

That means building up standalone apps like WhatsApp and Instagram, but also spinning certain aspects of Facebook out into their own services, just as it's done with Facebook Messenger.

Recall that Creative Labs is the division within Facebook that recently released Facebook Paper, a very different way to view the social network, and is working on other undisclosed experiments.

The long game

Zuckerberg said people want separate experiences on mobile, as opposed to the single, all-inclusive desktop site and mobile app that Facebook has started out with.

For users, a big part of the strategy involves controlling exactly what notifications they receive, Zuckerberg continued.

"I think you'll see a combination of us making some of these things that have been products for a while into first-class experiences," he said. "And you'll see us exploring new areas that we felt we didn't have the room to do before."

Zuckerberg added that "most" of the new things Facebook is doing won't "move any needles" for a long time in terms of Facebook's overall business.

But that doesn't mean those things - like Paper, or Facebook Home - will never be successful. They just might take three or five years before they reach Instagram levels of success, he noted.

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