Facebook on the iPhone is a profoundly dissatisfying experience. The Facebook iPhone app is no good (at least it’s free), the iPhone-optimized Facebook website (http://iphone.facebook.com) is no good, and using the regular Facebook site on the iPhone is not exactly optimal either. Come to think of it, the regular site has its problems even when you’re viewing it on a computer.
But I’ve found a solution. There is, of course, one more way to access Facebook: the “standard” mobile version that gets served up to the mobile browsers in more feeble cellphones than the iPhone. Turns out you can access the mobile site from an iPhone, and it offers a lot of features that the iPhone-optimized site lacks. I suspect Facebook has abandoned further development on the iPhone-optimized site given that they’re also developing a full-fledged iPhone app, but since the app sucks, it’s a lose-lose situation for iPhone users.
As I said, you can access the regular mobile version from your iPhone, but if you just go to its main URL — http://m.facebook.com — from an iPhone, it automatically redirects you to http://iphone.facebook.com. So you have to trick it, which isn’t hard. Here’s the magic URL you’ll want to bookmark in Mobile Safari (and maybe on your computer as well):