When accessing Facebook on a mobile browser, you may notice two similar looking URLs – m.facebook.com and l.facebook.com. What exactly is the difference between the m and l versions of Facebook’s mobile site?
In this guide, we’ll compare the m.facebook and l.facebook mobile interfaces and capabilities to understand the distinction between these two Facebook mobile offerings.
Facebook’s Mobile-Optimized Websites
To optimize the Facebook experience on mobile devices, Facebook offers:
- m.facebook.com – Designed for older phones and basic mobile browsers
- l.facebook.com – Made for modern smartphones with full features
The “m” and “l” denote mobile and lightweight versions of Facebook’s website specifically formatted for mobile screens.
M.Facebook – Basics
M.facebook.com is Facebook’s original basic mobile site:
- Launched in 2006 for early mobile phones
- Stripped down version of desktop site
- Focused on key features like News Feed
- Less media-rich than full desktop site
- Still accessible on modern smartphones
M.Facebook caters to basic mobile browsers.
Features of M.Facebook
Key features available on m.facebook.com include:
- Scrolling news feed with text-focused posts
- Status updates including text, emoji, photos
- Commenting and reacting to posts
- Accessing messages and notifications
- Navigating to key areas like profile, friends
- Simple responsive mobile design
M.Facebook focuses most heavily on the news feed rather than media features.
L.Facebook – Overview
L.facebook.com is the modern, full-featured mobile site:
- Launched in 2015
- Streamlined version of desktop site
- Optimized for smartphones, not older phones
- Access to full functionality like videos and games
- Display of HD images and media
- Expanded capabilities beyond m.facebook
L.Facebook caters to modern mobile browsers and devices.
Capabilities of L.Facebook
L.facebook.com includes the features of m.facebook.com plus additional capabilities like:
- Viewing HD videos and photos
- Playing games
- AccessingMessages, Watch, Marketplace, Groups
- Updated visual design and navigation
- Support for newer components like Stories
- Camera and location access
- Augmented reality features
- Personalized recommendations
The l version contains most desktop features.
Appearance Differences Between M and L
Visually, m.facebook and l.facebook differ in:
- Layout density – m is more compact
- Navigation styles – l has a bottom bar
- Image quality – l displays higher resolution
- Font choices – l uses Facebook’s current fonts
- Media capacity – l supports more immersive visuals
- Customization – l resembles personalized desktop site
L provides a richer visual experience given modern device capabilities.
Logging Into M.Facebook vs L.Facebook
Logging into either mobile site is the same process:
- Enter Facebook email or username
- Input password
- Submit login credentials
- Authentication works interchangeably
You remain logged into your one Facebook account regardless of visiting m vs l.
Posting Content on M.Facebook vs L.Facebook
Posting is also nearly identical between the two:
- Same status update box
- Can post text, emoji, photos, videos
- Add stickers, apply filters, tag friends
- Post visibility settings are the same
Any differences in posting are due to media limits for m.facebook.
Who Can See Your Posts on Each Service
Like the desktop site, privacy settings control who can see your posts:
- Adjustable to Friends, Public, or a Custom list
- Your posts don’t automatically become more public based on using m.facebook or l.facebook
- Privacy settings carry between all interfaces
The version of mobile site does not change post visibility and privacy.
Accessing Messages and Notifications
Messages and notifications function similarly across both:
- Notifications for reactions, comments, shares on your posts
- Ability to read and respond to private messages
- Notifications surfaced on both sites
- No significant difference in messaging capability
You don’t miss notifications by using one versus the other.
Availability of Ads and Marketplace
Ads and Marketplace access varies slightly between the sites:
- Both m.facebook and l.facebook display ads
- Marketplace is available on l.facebook but absent from m.facebook
- l.facebook may see more interactive ad formats
- Ad performance metrics differ for the two sites
Ads are tailored appropriately for the mobile design of each site.
Technical Aspects of the Sites
From a technical standpoint:
- Both sites detect mobile browser user agents
- Dynamically serve optimized mobile layouts
- Use responsive design to adapt to phone capabilities
- Apps link to corresponding m.facebook or l.facebook
- Shared infrastructure and databases on back end
The key differentiation is front-end presentation.
Privacy and Permission Differences
There are some slight differences in privacy flows:
- l.facebook seeks device permissions like camera access
- l.facebook localized to GPS for features like check-ins
- l.facebook supports facial recognition login
- Both request notifications permissions
- Overall privacy levels are very similar
Users have control over privacy regardless of which mobile site they use.
Using M.Facebook and L.Facebook on Mobile Apps
The Facebook mobile apps for iOS and Android:
- Automatically redirect to corresponding l.facebook site
- Mobile apps no longer link to m.facebook
- Provides consistent experience linking apps and mobile browser
Mobile apps integrate exclusively with l.facebook today.
Manually Switching Between M.Facebook and L.Facebook
To manually switch sites:
- Add ?ref=m to the URL to temporarily access m.facebook
- The sites have different URLs but shared login sessions
- No need to reauthenticate when switching back and forth
You remain logged into your Facebook account regardless of which mobile site you visit.
Primary Use Cases for Each Service
M.facebook is geared towards:
- Older phones with limited capabilities
- Regions with slower mobile broadband
- Basic browsing and text-based posting
L.facebook is better for:
- Modern iOS and Android smartphones
- Richer media experience and additional features
- Fully personalized social feed
Frequently Asked Questions About M.Facebook and L.Facebook
Can you use the same Facebook account on both m.facebook and l.facebook?
Yes, m.facebook and l.facebook allow you to access the same Facebook account. You remain logged into your account on both the mobile sites.
Is one safer or more private than the other?
M.facebook and l.facebook offer essentially the same privacy controls and security protections for your Facebook account. Your data is not at higher risk on one versus the other.
Why am I redirected to m.facebook from Facebook app?
If you are redirected to m.facebook after tapping a link in the Facebook app, it likely means that content is not supported within their in-app mobile browser and requires the full m.facebook site.
Can I post photos and videos on m.facebook?
While limited compared to l.facebook, you can post photos and videos when using m.facebook. However, the image and video quality may be reduced and lack certain editing features.
Is Marketplace available on both mobile sites?
Marketplace is only available on l.facebook at this time. To access and use Facebook Marketplace, you need to ensure you are on l.facebook rather than the m.facebook site.
In summary, l.facebook provides the most robust experience on mobile designed specifically for smartphones, while m.facebook caters to basic mobile phones with simplified options.
Most users today are automatically directed to l.facebook when using Facebook on mobile browsers or apps, given its enhanced functionality and media support. Both sites grant the ability to access Facebook on the go from any device.Sharing Is Caring: