Facebook hiring Apple engineers to make its own phone
This entry was posted on Monday, May 28, 2012.
Facebook has tried its hand at integrating itself into phones before - the HTC ChaCha and Salsa come to mind, but that essentially involved just adding a shortcut button to the Facebook app, rather than being Facebook centric phones as such. There have been rumors circulating about a dedicated Facebook phone for quite a while now, but, until now, they seemed to be mere speculation.
A New York Times report on Sunday claimed that Facebook hired "more than half a dozen former Apple software and hardware engineers who worked on the iPhone," and another Apple engineer who'd worked on the iPad.
Inside sources in Facebook apparently claim that this is actually the third time Facebook is trying to create its own phone. The very first try was a complete failure as the company hadn't fully appreciated the magnitude of effort required to create a smartphone from scratch. The HTC (Facebook button) collaboration was a natural progression for the social networking company, after its own failure, as it made sense for them to work with experienced heads in the smartphone industry. But now it is specifically targeting Apple employees in order to come up with an ideal solution to its troubles in the mobile hardware sector.
Digitimes has reportedly claimed that Facebook will also be collaborating with HTC again for a phone to launch by the end of this year, while it comes up with its very own phone.
Facebook's recent acquisitions indicate that Mark Zuckerberg and his team are trying to make their company a lot more than just a hugely popular social network. They are trying to create a self sustaining ecosystem with some of the best apps around - a good case in point would be the Instagram acquisition, which has led to Facebook launching a somewhat derivative 'Camera' app, which provides the same number of filters and effects for end users. Facebook is also said to be considering an acquisition of Opera, who make the much admired, much used browser for every platform under the sun. Adding a phone to its own repertoire eventually will help it to organically integrate the many scattered pieces that make up Facebook's products and acquisitions. It will also help it overcome a huge hurdle in faced in its IPO - the lack of mobile advertising revenue, while perhaps also helping Facebook get a whole new revenue stream for phone sales.