Facebook today removed its long defunct Facebook Poke and Facebook Camera apps from the App Store, quietly pulling the apps with no notification to users. A Facebook spokesperson confirmed the removal to The Verge, but declined to comment further.
First introduced in December of 2012, Facebook’s Poke app was the company’s answer to Snapchat, allowing users to send ephemeral photos, videos, messages, and “poke” notifications to their friends. Each message only lasted a few seconds before expiring, much like Snapchat’s temporary messages.
Poke quickly floundered following its release as it failed to gain popularity amid competition from Snapchat, and it received no updates.
Facebook’s Camera app was slightly more popular when it launched in May of 2012 as a way to make sharing multiple photos on Facebook “faster and easier.” The single function app, which also let users browse photos, saw several updates during the first year it was released but later fell to the wayside as Facebook integrated Camera features into its main Facebook app. At the time of removal, the Facebook Camera had not been updated since August of 2013.
Despite the failure of Facebook Poke and Facebook Camera, Facebook has continued with development of standalone Facebook apps under its Creative Labs initiative. Paper, the first product to come out of Creative Labs, has been lauded for its design and has thus far enjoyed moderate success.