Yesterday evening, many iOS apps (including some of the most recognizable names) suddenly started crashing on launch.

Turns out all of these apps use the Facebook SDK, and Facebook had messed up a piece of server-side configuration.

Mistakes like this can happen anywhere, including at Facebook, and this one was fixed pretty quickly. However, the interesting part of the situation actually comes from what developers discovered while trying to debug the crash: turns out the Facebook SDK injects itself directly into the app launch sequence, which means it still loads even when all code calls to it are removed.


  • Yes, Facebook really is everywhere. The media still seems to think this will be a surprise to users.
  • It's really important for SDKs to be open source. Many in the mobile industry try to make excuses for closed source SDKs, but Facebook will most likely clean up its act now this is public. That probably wouldn't have happened with a closed source SDK, because they could have swept the whole thing under a rug.
Alex Bauer


Something happened a couple of weeks ago that likely slipped under the radar for many of us outside of India: Facebook invested $5.7 billion into Jio Platforms.

Why does this matter?

Amongst many other ventures, Jio controls the largest telecom network in India. This makes them incredibly powerful (and a ‘home team player’) in a market where Facebook has often struggled (frequently due to protectionistic governmental interference). One of the remaining holes that keeps Jio’s portfolio from becoming a WeChat-like ‘super app’ is a reliable communication/messaging platform, and, fortuitously, Facebook’s presence in India today is primarily WhatsApp.

If it pans out, this investment could become a Yahoo/Alibaba-esque entry into tech lore. Or, like so many of these tech megacorp tie-ups (remember the Facebook phone?), it could be a total bureaucratic bust with overestimated ’synergies’ that never pan out in reality.

For a far more knowledgable exploration of what the Facebook/Jio deal means long-term, this article from The Ken is a great read.

Industry Buzz

Walled Gardens

Privacy & Security


This week’s example of a great app-first user experience: Food Network leveraging deferred deep links and Deepviews to drive app engagement and acquisition from Facebook.


Activity on both mobile (web+app) and desktop (web) has grown during COVID-19. But desktop → app journeys via ‘text-me-the-app’ are up the most.

Also: mobile stays steady throughout the week…while desktop goes through the floor every weekend.


Depop: Farah Abuzeid

Why Data Storytelling is Marketing Gold

How does someone with a passion for cooking end up leading a team driving business-critical decisions? What does it take to teach yourself how to code then apply that to how you are able to help a company grow?

This and how she learned to tell stories with data at Visa, the 2x2 matrix thinking model and when to make a career jump into (or out of) the startup world on this episode of How I Grew This with Farah Abuzeid of Depop.

Listen now: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Stitcher