Facebook has over 150 million users, its own film in the works, and now there are rumors of a mobile phone based on Google’s open source Android platform. According to Business Insider, the reason why Facebook is secretly building a phone is because it needs to be a platform and not just a service. What better foundation to lay it on than Google’s Android?
So what is fueling the rumors? Facebook have always been a fierce competitior to Google in terms of recruitment, but now Facebook has hired away Google’s Senior Product Manager of Android, Erick Tseng. No easy feat. The Business Insider articles may be far fetched, but they are revealing and nothing if not exciting.
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Facebook could easily customize and brand a phone without “building” it and also “selling” it themselves. I can see the college kids already camping out in front of AT&T and Verizon stores waiting to get the first Facebook phone. This disruption to the market reminds me more of the development and rollout of first iPhones and Droids. The question is how will the Androids and iPhones be able to compete with a second rate Facebook app and an OS without the Facebook apis?
This will never, ever happen. This rumor sounds completely absurd.
I do not think facebook will venture into the mobile phone area… they might partner with droid in the future… don’t think so though. Iphone is on the way out, Droid is the future! One hint to steve jobs OS!
There are quite a few reasons to doubt this rumor, facebook has been around since 2006 and only turned to profit in last quarter of 2009, so they don’t yet have cash to blow at this point in their history, they might however have some partnership deals to make facebook more integrated on some phones if they work with carrier or manufacturer for example.