LinkedIn already had one of the better iPhone apps, but it went back to the drawing board and developed a completely new app with more functionality--for both iPhone and Android. If you already have the LinkedIn app on your iPhone or Android smartphone, you should update it. If you don't already have the LinkedIn app, it's time you did.
When I first joined LinkedIn many moons ago, I looked at it as sort of a Monster.com job site with the added benefit of the sort six degree of separation that would allow me to leverage my network of contacts to find a new or better job if need be. I didn't really consider it a social network in the Facebook sense of the word, but really more of a professional networking and job hunting service.
A lot has changed since then, though--both in the evolution of social networking, and in LinkedIn itself. The site remains as a professional or business-oriented social network, but it has adapted and expanded to become a much more useful site that goes beyond job hunting. As a writer, it is a great source of expert commentary and insight for articles, and as a business professional it is an awesome tool for sharing information in a social network setting without the Zynga games, and other silly things that seem to come with other social networks like Facebook or Google+.
A blog post from LinkedIn unveiling the new mobile app(s) explains, "LinkedIn Mobile page views have grown more than 400% year-over-year, making it the fastest growing consumer service on LinkedIn."
With that in mind, LinkedIn has redesigned the mobile app to improve the experience. Here are three reasons you should be using the new LinkedIn app (assuming you use LinkedIn...and have an iPhone or Android smartphone):
1. Simpler and Faster. The previous LinkedIn app was already one of my favorites, but it had 12 different icons to choose from. The new interface is much cleaner, and more polished, and it reduces the number of options to four. LinkedIn also managed to streamline performance and boost speeds from two to ten times faster than the previous LinkedIn app.
2. LinkedIn Groups. The new app lets you access and interact with your LinkedIn Groups. You can read and participate in ongoing Group discussions, or add new discussions from the iPhone.
3. Updates. The old LinkedIn app had a button to access "All Updates", so this isn't entirely new. But, the Updates button on the new LinkedIn app delivers a more visually appealing experience and quick access to both Recent Updates from your own LinkedIn network, as well as the LinkedIn Today news headlines.
The new LinkedIn app seems to have taken a good thing and make it even better. Now, if LinkedIn would just take that same ingenuity and creativity and develop an equivalent iPad app I'll be all set.