Our app has a 'Facebook' button that opens another user's facebook profile.

Based on the assumptions that: most people who network also have higher facebook privacy settings, and also people who use the native facebook app are never logged into facebook in their mobile browser, simply loading a webview of their facebook URL would not be optimal because the user would need to 'log in' in order to do anything.

So the next thought was to hook the native app, and use the webview URL as a fallback. The only issue with this is that it kicks the user out of the app and into the facebook app.

My initial solution to this was to give an alert or action sheet with something like: Open in Facebook // Cancel

Should kicking the user out of the app require confirmation? Or is adding another "Click okay to proceed" step an annoyance?

  • I think 'kicks them out' is not really correct. If I'm reading this correctly I would assume they are still logged into their profile in the app / web but you're just opening up another unrelated instance of it. Kicked-out implies that they can't get back to it without logging in again, which doesn't seem to be the case here- they just close the browser and re-open the app and they're back in again.
    – JonW
    Jan 11, 2013 at 23:57
  • That's correct — they aren't locked out, but they would be leaving the app. The question is about weather leaving the app to open the native facebook app (or twitter, or linkedin) should require confirmation or should pressing the Facebook/Linkedin/Twitter buttons simply open the native Facebook/Linkedin/Twitter apps (if installed) Jan 12, 2013 at 0:01
  • 3
    Personally I hate confirmation prompts, especially when I encounter them all the time. But I know they protect less active or savvy users. So I always like this kind of thing, if it's necessary, to have a checkbox "don't ask me again".
    – jlarson
    Jan 12, 2013 at 1:17

3 Answers 3


If your "Facebook button" implies users that they will do something related to Facebook enough, the confirmation is not necessary.

for intance

enter image description here

this picture tells users they will do something related to facebook as it has the similar appearance to facebook's layout, so you won't surprise them when you redirect them to the facebook app.

however, if your button is something like:


users may think they are going to add another user as friend in your app because this picture seems different from the experience users use facebook.

(you can find these two pictures by using "add as friend button" as keyword in google image search)

Apple uses an explicit button and redirects users to the facebook app without confirmation when they want users to like their page on facebook in their app "12 days of gifts". I think this may be a good guide.

In short, use an explicit button, which implies users they are going to do something related to facebook, and redirect users directly.

  • You're linked the same image twice, so your second example is unclear. Jan 14, 2013 at 18:49
  • oops, I am sorry for that. I have updated it, thank you!
    – Brian
    Jan 15, 2013 at 3:19

I think that switching between apps forth and back is annoying. It may not be slower than to open an embedded preview but will look slower since it will actually show switching apps animation, etc. It may also be confusing since your users may not want to do anything at all (that's not the person they're looked for, etc) so they will switch and then return back immediately.

I think that you should open an another app to perform some clear and simple actions like 'authorization' (facebook, twitter) or something similar (link dropbox folder, etc). These actions are performed rarely (or even once). It's okey to switch to another app in these cases.

And in a case if your users will do this operation often I think that it's better to give them profile preview in a web view (with an ability to "Open in facebook app" or "Add as a friend" if needed [without any confirmation] to perform any secured operations). So your users will actually be able to decide if they really want (need) to go to another app or not.

Or, alternatively, you may call to action ("add as friend") as @Brian already mentioned. That's a simple and clear action so your users will be aware of what will happen next.


Should kicking the user out of the app require confirmation?

No. Unless your app has anything to do with money (such as an App to fill income tax online, ticket booking, etc ) and user is currently filling a form which has a financial implications on him, don't bother him with any dialog boxes or pop-ups.

Sometimes it is okay to ask for confirmation when user has clicked on a delete or Cancel button to remove an important entity (depending upon the context of the application) such as cancelling a ticket vs cancelling notification for a new ticket promotion.

Or is adding another "Click okay to proceed" step an annoyance?

"Click okay to proceed" should be the button caption on which user will click to proceed. It shouldn't be another layer of confirmation.

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