While privacy is critically important, the new Groups feature is the announcement that will likely be the most talked about among Facebook users. The new Facebook Groups feature is essentially a replacement for Facebook’s Friend List feature and the existing Facebook Groups Feature , and the new feature will allow users to segment friends and communication on Facebook.
During the announcement, Facebook indicated that the new Groups feature is not intended for business users, which is why Pages exist. Instead, the Groups feature is for individual users looking to have conversation about different topics with a certain segment of his or her Facebook friends.
Some of the major features of the new Groups feature are:
Unlimited Groups - Facebook users will be able to create as many groups as they want. Facebook gave examples of creating groups for family, friends, classmates, and other subsets of a user's overall friends list.
Group Chat - Facebook has introduced a group chat feature as part of the newest version of Facebook Groups. Instead of being limited to chatting with only one friend at a time, users can now send Facebook chat messages to groups of friends.
Mailing Lists - Similar to the group chat feature, users can now send Facebook messages to everyone in a group, essentially creating mailing lists of groupings of friends.
Docs - The concept of a wiki is not new, but Facebook is bringing this traditional social web element into groups. Each group will now be able to collaboratively create and edit documents.
Graph API for Groups - The Facebook Open Graph API is the technology that helps to connect Facebook data to external sites. Facebook is now adding group information to the Graph API, enabling group information to be used by third party developers. Previously, a user could see which of his/her friends liked a song on Pandora, but with the new Group API information, this feature will become more granular and display information for individuals in specific groups.