The push notifications only include a snippet of information, like a headline, but a link within the notification will send you to the publisher's mobile webpage, which surfaces inside the app. If you don't have time to read something right away, you can save content to read later or share it with others through platforms like — you guessed it — Facebook.
And while there are plenty of news readers out there, including a new one built into iPhones called Apple News, Facebook is adamant that Notify is not a news reader. And that's because you can get all kinds of content on Notify that isn't news, like music videos from Vevo or daily deals from Groupon.
The million-dollar question, then, is why Facebook is building an app for this at all. The company already has News Feed for content discovery and 1.5 billion people who use Facebook every month. Why send people more notifications for the things that, in theory, they could get by following these publishers on Facebook anyway?
The thinking, according to Michael Cerda, product director at Facebook, is that mobile notifications are their own medium, separate from Facebook or any other news consumption platform.
"People have different ways they want to consume information," Cerda told Re/code. "Search is one way. Social is another way. And we think push notifications might be yet another. We see that as an evolving medium and want to be a part of that."