Facebook Phone – Is It Real?

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Update 5/4/13: The Stock market seems to LIKE Facebook Home.

Update 4/4/13: Techcruch has covered everything you need to know about Facebook Home. There were shreds of truth however in most of the rummors below regarding official devices and forking Android.

Facebook will unveil its latest push into the mobile world on April 4th next week in a press event titled ‘Come see our new home on Android’. This seems a little too much hype for an app update. Industry rummors of a Facebook Phone or branded phone have failed to materialise over the past couple of years so the time might finally have arrived. A big factor in Facebook’s dramatic stock plunge after it’s IPO has be due worries over how it will monazite mobile. Nothing much exists thus far compared to the full website so what we receive might well answer that call to arms from advertisers. Rummors have exploded online today after a story appeared from Techcrunch. However, Christina Warren argues a few good points why a facebook phone might not make sense.

Facebook Home is the rumoured name. Facebook is too small a company to manufacture it’s own devices and HTC have been a rumoured partner. Device wise specs look fairly mid/low end 1.5Ghz dual core, 1GB RAM, 16GB storage and of course front and back cameras. We guess that translates to an affordable phone on/off contract.

A Facebook phone could run a tweaked version of Android similar to what Amazon has done with it’s Kindle Fire range. The UI will be facebook centric with the usual new feeds and updates. Importantly Facebook may feature there own app store based around android to tie in with their existing offering. Apps have been a strong part of Facebook’s monetization in particular releases from Zynga such as Farmville didn’t do too badly for either company (at the time). The Android OS is released as a (partially) open platform so such use is well within license terms. Last year we seen the legal battle over patents between Oracle (who created Java) and Google reach a partial conclusion in Google’s favor. Google hasn’t been pushing Android as much as a brand lately and product consolidation rummors with Chrome have started. We do wonder whats left in Android for Google.

A few short days till we find out – in the meantime we can alway amuse ourselves by watching the latest stock price.

Updates

  • The Facebook phone will be the HTC First and run as Facebook Launcher/Theme – It will not be a forked version of Android.
  • The real question is will anyone want it.

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