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Could HTC Be Making A Facebook Phone?

David Gilbert


Could HTC Be Making A Facebook Phone?

Business-orientated free sheet City AM is not usually a major source of breaking technology news but readers on buses and trains this morning have been reading that the mythical Facebook Phone, or actually two of them, could be coming next month – and in the form of HTC-made handsets.

HTC are obviously remaining tight-lipped about such rumours but City AM has reported that HTC will unveil two Facebook-branded phones at Mobile World Congress next month. The devices will be the first to feature the Facebook logo and will also be colour coded with Facebook-blue so everyone will know you own a Mark Zuckerberg phone.

We have a lot of reservations about this report considering they quote HTC as being a "Korean" company and credit them for producing both of Google’s Nexus phones. However rumours have been floating around about a Facebook phone for some time now and we have even been invited to a mysterious Facebook “event” next Monday morning in London which could bring us some more information. We'll let you know live from the event as it happens.

Another issue these rumours raise of course is what would a Facebook phone actually do that would be different from any other smart phone with a Facebook app? Rumours suggest the Android OS, on which the phone would run, would be tweaked to show Facebook messages more prominently but if that’s all it is offering there may not be much of a market for such a device except among Facebook-obsessed teenager.

In related news and in a cringe inducing piece of news for poor old Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook founder had his very own Facebook page hacked yesterday by an anonymous intruder who mysteriously used his illegal entry to post something about mirco financing in third world countries. What this has to do with Facebook is not obvious but what is quite clear is that the security issues at the social network are major and will need to be addressed.

Source: City Am


January 27, 2011, 3:38 am

"if that&#8217s all it is offering there may not be much of a market for such a device except among Facebook-obsessed teenager. "

That's a hugely sweeping, generalised statement, hopefully made only to get a reaction (this is one by the way).

There's plenty of evidence to suggest that Facebook has a very wide demographic, and with the introduction of NFC on smartphones, Facebook credits out of beta and Facebook places, there are some very clear possibilities ahead.

No specific need for a Facebook phone over any other smartphone other than to maintain momentum. And we all know Zuckerberg is all about momemtum...

This was a lazy article in that it was easier to dismiss the possibilities rather than articulate or imagine them. Pity.


January 27, 2011, 2:23 pm

Also, isn't "Facebook-obsessed teenager"s a massive market, and one which is going to make up tomorrow's gadget buying consumers?

David Gilbert

January 27, 2011, 5:34 pm

@Greg I agree that the sentence is generalised and sweeping but I still stand by the point that a Facebook phone has a limited appeal and would most likely be limited to those who use the social media site the most, which are teenagers. I had not thought about the possibility of using Facebook credits in conjunction with NFC and that would expand the scope of such a phone but still not enough to make it stand out from a high-spec Android phone with a Facebook app.

@Bluepork: Agreed, a huge market but will their parents be willing to buy another phone just on the basis it is a Facebook-branded one? I'm not sure.

Chris Hamer

January 28, 2011, 4:21 am

I could be counted as one of those teenagers :p well just at 19 but i actually hope it fails completely :P

As if facebook isnt big enough and its already quite a big part of people's life in the fact its kind of peer pressured onto you in a way, if everyone else is using it and organising events, uploading photos to it you feel the need to join.

Making a phone is forcing it upon people even more, they would probably want to make something like this because they know that if another big thing comes a long and everyone moves to that then they are dead in the water.

They would like this because it would force the user to keep using it as they probably would not want to buy another phone, especially if they were blocked from using any other service.


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