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Lauren Hurley/PA Wire

Facebook looked completely different 12 years ago - here's what's changed over the years

It’s come a long way since it was called TheFacebook.


As you’d expect, the site looks completely different now compared when it first launched on 4 February, 2004.

But in case you haven’t been a loyal user since the beginning, we’ll give you a little tour of how the site evolved.

Check it out:

Remember when Facebook was called Thefacebook? It started at Harvard and slowly opened up to other colleges.

remember-when-facebook-was-called-thefacebook-it-started-at-harvard-and-slowly-opened-up-to-other-colleges Business Insider Business Insider

Mark Zuckerberg originally described himself as not only the founder of Facebook, but also as the “Master and Commander” and “Enemy of the State”.

mark-zuckerberg-originally-described-himself-as-not-only-the-founder-of-facebook-but-also-as-the-master-and-commander-and-enemy-of-the-state Business Insider Business Insider

We love this gem about “poking” from one of the original FAQ pages.

we-love-this-gem-about-poking-from-one-of-the-original-faq-pages Business Insider Business Insider

Here’s what a Facebook group page looked like in 2005.

heres-what-a-facebook-group-page-looked-like-in-2005 Business Insider Business Insider

For comparison, this is what a Facebook group page looks like today.

for-comparison-this-is-what-a-facebook-group-page-looks-like-today Businessinsider Businessinsider

Back in 2005, before the News Feed launched, Facebook was essentially just a collection of disconnected profiles.

back-in-2005-before-the-news-feed-launched-facebook-was-essentially-just-a-collection-of-disconnected-profiles Business Insider Business Insider

The company decided to drop the “the” from its name in 2005, after it bought the domain for $200,000.

the-company-decided-to-drop-the-the-from-its-name-in-2005-after-it-bought-the-domain-facebookcom-for-200000 Business Insider Business Insider


Check out Mark Zuckerberg’s profile in 2006.

check-out-mark-zuckerbergs-profile-in-2006 Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook launched the News Feed to display all your friends’ activity in a single timeline in 2006.

facebook-launched-the-news-feed-to-display-all-your-friends-activity-in-a-single-timeline-in-2006 Business Insider Business Insider

At the same time, Facebook introduced the Mini-Feed. But the entire concept of a News Feed resulted in some very public outrage.

Some users even went so far to call one of Facebook’s product managers the devil.

at-the-same-time-facebook-introduced-the-mini-feed-but-the-entire-concept-of-a-news-feed-resulted-in-some-very-public-outrage-some-users-even-went-so-far-to-call-one-of-facebooks-product-managers-the-devil Business Insider Business Insider

In 2009, Facebook’s home page got a facelift. Posts started to stream through the News Feed in real-time.

in-2009-facebooks-home-page-got-a-facelift-posts-started-to-stream-through-the-news-feed-in-real-time Business Insider Business Insider

That same year, Facebook also introduced its algorithm for determining the order in which status updates should be displayed.

that-same-year-facebook-also-introduced-its-algorithm-for-determining-the-order-in-which-status-updates-should-be-displayed Business Insider Business Insider

In 2010, Facebook brought notifications to the top navigation bar following yet another redesign.

in-2010-facebook-brought-notifications-to-the-top-navigation-bar-following-yet-another-redesign Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook also rolled out a new, more visual profile. It added a row of recently tagged images below your name and basic profile information.

facebook-rolled-out-a-new-more-visual-profile-in-2010-it-added-a-row-of-recently-tagged-images-below-your-name-and-basic-profile-information Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook launched the News Ticker in 2011 so users could keep up with their friends while browsing through other parts of Facebook.

facebook-launched-the-news-ticker-in-2011-so-users-could-keep-up-with-their-friends-while-browsing-through-other-parts-of-facebook Business Insider Business Insider

The Facebook Timeline feels like it’s been around since the beginning. But it launched in 2011 to act as a virtual timeline of your entire life.

the-facebook-timeline-feels-like-its-been-around-since-the-beginning-but-it-launched-in-2011-to-act-as-a-virtual-timeline-of-your-entire-life Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook started flooding the News Feed with sponsored stories in January 2012.

facebook-started-flooding-the-news-feed-with-sponsored-stories-in-january-2012 Business Insider Business Insider

Here’s what Facebook’s News Feed looks like today.

heres-what-facebooks-news-feed-looks-like-today Business Insider Business Insider

This is what Facebook’s mobile app looked like when it first launched.

this-is-what-facebooks-mobile-app-looked-like-when-it-first-launched Business Insider Business Insider

It has been completely redesigned.

it-has-been-completely-redesigned Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook also split its instant messaging into a different app called Messenger in 2011.

It’s now has more than 800 million monthly users.

facebook-also-split-its-instant-messaging-into-a-different-app-called-messenger-in-2011-its-now-got-more-than-800-million-monthly-users Business Insider Business Insider

Facebook also owns a bunch of other popular apps, most notably Instagram, which the company bought for $1 billion (€894 million) in 2012.

With more than 400 million monthly users, that seems like a steal nowadays.

facebook-also-owns-a-bunch-of-other-popular-apps-most-notably-instagram-which-the-company-bought-for-1-billion-in-2012-with-more-than-400-million-monthly-users-that-seems-like-a-steal-nowadays Business Insider Business Insider

Today, more than 1.5 billion people use the social network every single month.

today-more-than-15-billion-people-use-the-social-network-every-single-month Business Insider Business Insider

And more than 1.4 billion people use it on their mobile phones every month. Not bad, considering 12 years ago smartphones didn’t really exist.

and-more-than-14-billion-people-use-it-on-their-mobile-phones-every-month-not-bad-considering-12-years-ago-smartphones-didnt-even-exist Business Insider Business Insider

Jillian D’Onfro

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