Facebook on Thursday launched a long-awaited update to its that promises major speed improvements over its slow predecessor.

The updated universal application is now available (iTunes link) for download in the . The features in version 5.0, as detailed by the social networking site, are all about speed:

  • We've rebuilt the so it's faster and easier to use.
  • Scrolling through news feed is faster than ever
  • New banner lets you tap to quickly see more stories – no need to refresh
  • Photos open fast and close with one downward swipe
  • Instant access to your notifications

Facebook version 5.0 is a 7.3-megabyte download available for free from the iOS App Store. It is compatible with iPhones, iPads and iPod touches running iOS 4.3 or later.

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