Facebook has quietly launched a new app called Whale that allows users to quickly make memes and share them on social media, reports The Information (via The Verge). Right now Facebook wants to keep the app on the down-low as much as possible, which is why the social media giant has released Whale via its New Product Experimentation (NPE) team, which is listed as the app’s developer in Apple’s App Store.
Facebook’s NPE was launched earlier this year to develop and release apps that Facebook wants to experiment with without the promise that those apps will stick around for a long time or radically change course over their development cycle.
Right now the Whale app is only available on the Canadian App Store, which suggests just how experimental the app is. The app’s description is fairly simple: “No distractions, no hidden subscription pricing. Use your own images or choose from our stock photo library and get creative with text, tools, effects, and more right inside the app.” In other words, it’s like other meme-making apps.
So why is Facebook testing a meme-making app? Probably because its platforms, including Instagram and WhatsApp, are widely used to share said memes. Whale is just another example of Facebook wanting to have a hand in the creation of any type of content you post on its platforms.
Will Whale expand to other markets outside of Canada? It’s possible if the app has a successful test run there. Then again it’s entirely likely that even if Whale is a success, Facebook could scrap the app and just build its tools into the Facebook app directly.