A Facebook phone? Social media giant set to reveal 'new home on Android'
Nikhil Kumar is The Independent's New York correspondent. He was formerly assistant editor on the foreign desk and has also done a variety of jobs on the city desk, where he wrote about markets, commodities and other business and economics topics.
Monday 01 April 2013
The internet rumour mill has gone into overdrive ahead of a Facebook event later this week where the social network has promised to reveal its “new home on Android”, with the reference to the mobile operating system reviving speculation that it might launch a Facebook-branded phone.
The reason for the 4 April event at the social network’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California, is a closely guarded secret. Company watchers have only the invitation, with the reference to Android, to go by. The rumours are similar to those that emerged earlier this year, when Facebook unveiled an enhanced search feature for its website.
“Facebook has been exploring what it may be able to accomplish around Android for some time now, doing much of the work that would be needed to create its own phone... For years the company has focused its mobile efforts around the iPhone... However, it began a major Android push several months ago,” a post on the widely followed AllThingsD technology news website said.
It is unlikely that Facebook would produce its own handset. Instead, given past comments by founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg that Facebook is not planning its own device, a bespoke version of the Android operating system would make more sense and underline the social network’s growing emphasis on ensuring that customers keep logging on to its service as they switch to handheld devices.
So the company is expected to announce a collaboration with a hardware manufacturer, such as Taiwan’s HTC, which would produce the handset, while it would supply the operating system.
“A customised version of Android might help Facebook become more of a central service on smartphones than it can with simply an app that sits on top of Android,” said Robert Hof, a contributor to Forbes.
Josh Constine at TechCrunch, a technology website, wrote: “Rumours we’ve heard say that the project could actually be called ‘Facebook Home’, and its hallmark would be a heavily Facebook-ified mobile phone home screen. This could include Facebook news feed stories and data splayed out on the home screen.”
Life & Style blogs
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
White people become less racist just by moving to more diverse areas, study finds
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
- 1 To those who can’t see the point of International Women’s Day: you are the very reason it exists
- 2 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 3 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 4 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
- 5 Liam Neeson turned down James Bond role because late wife Natasha Richardson said she wouldn't marry him if he took it
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£1000 per month: Inspiring Interns: Our client is a start-up mobile app develo...
£6.31 per hour: Inspiring Interns: This growing predictive analytical software...
£55000 - £70000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...
£60000 - £70000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: Senior C# ASP.NET Deve...