Saturday, December 11, 2010

Facebook is possibly developing its own Smartphone (social, networking, communication, android, iPhone, GSM, voip, Auckland, "David Lim"

Believe it or not, two high level Facebook employees by the names Matthew Papakipos and Joe Hewitt are rumoured to be working on developing a smartphone for Social network giant. Former lead project manager of the Android OS, Eric Tseng is also said to be in the loop after leaving Google in May and signing on with Facebook. According to the project is such a secret, that most, if not all Facebook staff are unaware of it.

Correction, the project they are working on is not actually a phone, but the software used to power it, alongside a third party who will be building the hardware. The smartphone in question is expected to allow deep integration with Facebook contacts. It also appears that Facebook will be making use of Google’s open-source Android operating system to do its damage, which will surely anger a lot of people off at Google.

The question is why would Facebook be working on a smartphone? Apparently, Facebook has been concerned that Apple and Google are turning into some kind of threat as competitors, there is a rather deep Facebook integration in the Android platform, and there is an iPhone app which allows for contact merging.
Both Hewitt and Papakipos have extensive knowledge and experience with operating system experience. Papakipos was leading the Google Chrome OS project until June, when he quit and went to Facebook. As for Hewitt, he helped create the Firefox browser and created all of Facebook’s iPhone web apps.
When, where and how much is still unknown, but TechCrunch is betting the Facebook phone will be a lower end model (under $50.00), something very affordable that they can get into as many hands as possible, in other words, not much more than just a fully integrated Facebook device.
On the other side of the fence is Engadget, they expect a higher end product, if Facebook is truly concerned about the major players, it would not be targeting a lower end product.
All I can say is that Facebook is on top of its game for what it is, a social networking space. They may have the funds and the talent to run with this, but just remember who their completion is, Apple, Google, Nokia, RIM, Microsoft. I just cant see them beating those kind of odds.
What do you think it will be called, perhaps the Facepalm?


Facebook has denied making a phone of its own. It agreed that it was working on deeper integration of the social network with phones, but through its traditional approach of talking to other companies and not with its own devices.
Things are starting to get juicy…Mashable says “no Facebook phone”, while TechCrunch is still adamant that there will be a Facebook phone in the near future.
I going with TechCrunch on this one, remember last year when Google said they weren’t working on their own brand of a smartphone? What about two years back when Microsoft adamantly denied it wasn’t working on a Zune phone?

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