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Bloomberg Reports Facebook Building Android Smartphones

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the much-of-a-muchness dept.

Cellphones 63

destinyland writes "Reports are surfacing of a Facebook-backed smartphone running Google's Android system, built by INQ (who also manufactures a phone for Skype). GigaOm's Om Malik says he's been aware of the project 'for quite some time,' and Bloomberg News (linked above) reported that Facebook will release two AT&T smartphones in 2011, first in Europe and then in America. (Adding that 25% of Facebook users access the social networking site with their wireless devices.) " Whether it's pure semantics or pure misdirection, as of yesterday, Facebook acknowledges work with INQ, but describes the collaboration as customization, rather than a phone of their own.

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Tinfoil hat time (2, Interesting)

longhairedgnome (610579) | more than 3 years ago | (#33704982)

Google and facebook, two of the most scandalous purveyors of communication, together on one mobile device that is with you everywhere you go...

Re:Tinfoil hat time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33705048)

@longhairedgnome which one is the #randomnumber in your #sig?

Re:Tinfoil hat time (1)

longhairedgnome (610579) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708406)

The "O"h

Re:Tinfoil hat time (3, Insightful)

hex0D (1890162) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705072)

Google and facebook, two of the most scandalous purveyors of communication

...hysterical much? Sure Google and Facebook have issues, and the potential to be truly evil, the only reason they are even ever referred to as 'scandalous' is because their misbehavior has been an exception to the rule of generally decent behavior.

What 'purveyor of communication' would you prefer? J Randolf Hearst's 'yellow journalism', or Fox News, getting us into wars that actually kill people?

Re:Tinfoil hat time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33705386)

Call me paranoid, but in what kind of total idiot would trust personal information like phone calls, address book, texts and GPS information to Facebook, one of the biggest privacy whores in the universe?

Do you think for one second that they won't be mining that data (probably in real-time) for their own purposes? Even if they don't, how soon will it be before Facebook is hacked *again* and someone truly evil gets their hands on that information?

This has BAD ENDING written all over it, mark my words. Seriously, haven't you people learned ANYTHING??

Re:Tinfoil hat time (2, Insightful)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705568)

This has BAD ENDING written all over it, mark my words. Seriously, haven't you people learned ANYTHING??

Given that the average geek / Slashdot reader is falling over themselves to do almost exactly the same for Google, an entity that has demonstrated time and time again they have the ability and desire to be mining that data and already are... ...I think the answer is "not a bit".

Re:Tinfoil hat time (3, Insightful)

Joe Tie. (567096) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705626)

Oh yah, I'm terrified. I and everyone I know is just hardly getting by paying the massive debt incurred by school. The economy is shit, our retirement plan is going to be killing ourselves because we can't afford a real one, and I've been hacking my lungs up the past month because I can't afford to go to the doctor to get a prescription for the antibiotics I can't pay for either. We don't care, because privacy concerns are so minuscule compared to all our other problems. Rome's burning, it just set my hair ablaze. Fuck if I'm not going to enjoy the nice fiddle music as I burn.

Re:Tinfoil hat time (1)

improfane (855034) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708288)

How much are your antibiotics?

Why are we so fucking concerned about facebook? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33704988)

There are right now 3 articles in the slashdot front page about facebut/zuckerberg. THREE. Just WTF?

Facebut is a stupid website for fucking assholes. Zuckerberg is a disgusting Jew. How is this fucking news for nerds?

Re:Why are we so fucking concerned about facebook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33705212)

@Anonymous\ Coward most #f8k users are #losers which is also the #slashdot demographic

There's room for irony here. (4, Insightful)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705022)

Does this mean that Facebook is finally going to build a mobile phone interface that doesn't just outright suck?

I used the Facebook client for the iPhone when I had an iPhone. It was buggy as hell and left something to be desired. It improved towards the end of my using an iphone, but I must say it still wasn't that great, still had caching and sync issues. I found I was much better off using Safari on all but a few specialized task, but that sucked also.

Now I'm using an EVO 4G. The Facebook program that came with it sucked rocks. It was arguable worse than the iPhone one, because instead of giving me out of date garbage cache, it gave me nothing most of them. That or code errors. I updated to a newer version yesterday, seems to be a little better but I haven't really put it to the test. I've been doing just like I did with the iPhone with my Android phone, using one or the other depending on my task at hand. Still at the end of the day it's sort of random as to getting everything or not.

BTW - I've never been happier to ditch Apple, I far prefer Android.

I think it's going to be hilarious if Facebook releases a phone that does everything but Facebook well.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705150)

Does this mean that Facebook is finally going to build a mobile phone interface that doesn't just outright suck?

If they do the same as with the INQ 1 [wikipedia.org] then the facebook integration will be seamless, the rest of the interface was mediocre at best though; hopefully the Android base for this phone will solve that problem.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 3 years ago | (#33706126)

I actually bought the Linksys Iphone (yes, a Linksys Iphone) from Comp USA for $75 when they had the going out of business sale. Other than the little navigation nub losing its rubber point it was great, I loved it, then hurricane Ike soaked it. Never tried the INQ 1.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708974)

Don't get me wrong, the INQ1 is a great phone - fast (HSDPA), cheap and with great social media integration.
It's no smart phone though, so it's interface is only as good as other phones in the same price range & no touch screen. But at IIRC ~£60 on Pay as you go, I'm not complaining.

Re:There's room for irony here. (2, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705192)

I used the Facebook client for the iPhone when I had an iPhone. It was buggy as hell and left something to be desired. It improved towards the end of my using an iphone, but I must say it still wasn't that great, still had caching and sync issues.

I guess we all have different opinions on the topic but the Facebook application for the iPhone, for me, is 1000x better than the web interface. In fact, I'd rather visit Facebook via my phone than the website any day. Less clutter, no ads, no bullshit, and I can get shit done quickly--in and out--like websites were meant to be.

The only thing I still find "buggy" on the Facebook app for the iPhone is the chat feature but being that I don't chat with anyone for more than 1 or 2 quick lines, it's really a non-issue for me.

YMMV.

Ads on the internet? You're Doing It Wrong (2, Insightful)

znerk (1162519) | more than 3 years ago | (#33706540)

I guess we all have different opinions on the topic but the Facebook application for the iPhone, for me, is 1000x better than the web interface. In fact, I'd rather visit Facebook via my phone than the website any day. Less clutter, no ads, no bullshit, and I can get shit done quickly--in and out--like websites were meant to be.

Allow me to introduce your PC-based surfing to a little app called "firefox", with its addon friends "noscript" and "adblockplus". I absolutely love how they make my surfing experience faster - not downloading all the flash and graphical ads makes pages load ten times faster. (Yes, even facebook!)

Now, all I need to do is find a decent plugin for streaming together those articles that for some reason get broken up into one page per paragraph, and I'll be all set.

Re:Ads on the internet? You're Doing It Wrong (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 3 years ago | (#33707020)

I have AdBlock running. It doesn't get rid of all the other shit like "we suggest you like this commercial entity's page". It's a fucking ad plain and simple.

Re:Ads on the internet? You're Doing It Wrong (1)

znerk (1162519) | more than 3 years ago | (#33844492)

I have AdBlock running. It doesn't get rid of all the other shit like "we suggest you like this commercial entity's page". It's a fucking ad plain and simple.

Not sure which ads specifically you're referring to, unfortunately, but there are addons to deal with textual ads, as well.

Not sure exactly what you're bitching about, to be honest, since the problem as I understood it was mainly the flash-based ads that shout at you or have other annoying sounds to "attract your attention".

Re:There's room for irony here. (3, Funny)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 3 years ago | (#33706666)

Given the disturbing level of nerd arrogance on slashdot, I'm amazed that your opinion wasn't automatically dismissed and modded down while 'people' questioned your parentage, the sexual practice of your mother, and your sexual orientation while simultaneously threatening bodily harm and various forced sexual acts on you due not only to having a Facebook account, and not only having a preferred method of access, but for committing that most cardinal of Slashdot sins: owning an iPhone.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

MidnightBrewer (97195) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708012)

Pity about your timing; the iPhone version is finally stable and pretty useful.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708216)

I moved to Android about three weeks ago.

I ditched the iPhone not because of the crappy Facebook interface - really, not the top of my priority list - but because of Apple's and AT&T's hubris. Apple practices the art of lock-in like a martial art these days and have a real "we don't care what the complaints are" attitude. The only real difference between Apple of today and Microsoft of 1998 is that Apple's products actually work well and there are alternative available. Oddly, Microsoft seems to be slowly coming around and have recently shed many pounds of evil, not that I'm jumping on their bandwagon.

On top of that my iPhone was initially issued by a job I no longer have and wanting to be able to use my Google calendar seamlessly with my in-pocket device influenced my decision very heavily.

Re:There's room for irony here. (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708970)

The official Facebook app for Android sucks, but there a quite a few alternatives.

webOS app works nice (1)

DrYak (748999) | more than 3 years ago | (#33721168)

The Facebook Beta webOS app works nice on my PalmPre.
Wel, it helps that most webOS are basically HTML5/Javascript aplications, so doing a webOS doesn't necessarily require rewriting a new native app in C/C++ or Java.
the FB app for webOS is simply http://x.facebook.com/ [facebook.com] re-skinned to use native widgets, and taking advantage of some of the webOS abilities (photo galleries, background/status bar alerts, drop down menus...)
it just lacks some features (more advanced galleries like on http://m.facebook.com/ [facebook.com] , or more features on the event page).

and also, i fail to see what's facebook's advantage of rolling their own phone instead of just fixing the current apps :
- are they also trying to jump onto the voice-chat bandwagon ? (like the mentionned skype phones, or like Google Voice / Google Talk)
- are they hoping for lucrative subsidising from service providers (very unlikely if they begin on the european market)
- are they hoping to provide a fully FB-oriented phone (including calendar and contact list, à la webOS' synergy ?) and thus be able to mine even more user data for advertising dollars ?

wait (2, Insightful)

darrenkopp (981266) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705092)

they can't even make a decent facebook application for android... how are they going to make an android phone?

privacy..... (1)

kloffinger (837670) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705108)

Will people really want this? With all the privacy gaffes FB has made, a phone, with GPS etc. - letting FB know/broadcast/phone-home where you are at all times - seems like it could raise too many red flags for some consumers to want to buy a device from them. Perhaps the average consumer doesn't care though. ?

Re:privacy..... (4, Insightful)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705206)

They've got 500 million users; even if just 0.2% of those users decide that they love FB so much they need the official phone, that's a million sales. Probably more profitable than if they tried to sell Mark Zuckerberg bobble head dolls.

Re:privacy..... (2, Funny)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705222)

Actually, Zuckerber bobble heads would work. Whether you love or hate Facebook, I'm sure you could find a use for one.

Re:privacy..... (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 3 years ago | (#33821802)

I'm sure they would work, but I think that a branded phone has a greater profit potential. I mean, how much would you pay for a Zuck doll, and how many would you buy?

Re:privacy..... (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33705220)

The "average consumers" are the attention-starved, spoiled-rotten, whiny, self-centered crotch-fruit of goddamn yuppies.

These are the little fuckers with tons of mommy and daddy's disposable income and attention spans so short they gobble up attention like that one disgusting fat sea lion at Sea World out to devour every fish thrown into the pit. They give greedy J__s like Zuckerberg the impression that everybody wants to give up their privacy for attention. Their pitiful lives are so pathetic that they must revolve around gross voyeurism and confusion of positive and negative attention. Facebook is the meatspace equivalent of following somebody around and peeking through their home windows rather than engaging them in face-to-face conversation.

The consumers of Facebook are but retarded infantiles whose brains have been turned to mush from years of exposure to princessy MTV-fueled "be famous quick" spring-break fantasies. They are dumb, puerile, oblivious, deluded, bed-wetting, teet-sucking motherfuckers. They are America's future.

Data mining (2, Insightful)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705110)

And how much data-mining will they do to the call information? Let's face it, Facebook has an awful reputation for privacy.

Re:Data mining (3, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705306)

As opposed to Google? As opposed to Microsoft? Lets face it, any company who makes the majority of their revenue on ads is not going to be privacy friendly because the less privacy friendly they are the more money they can make.

Re:Data mining (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33707898)

I love have you throw Microsoft into the group who makes "their revenue on ads".

Re:Data mining (4, Funny)

Renraku (518261) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705504)

I can see it now. You'll have to link your Facebook account to your phone.

"John Q called Sally A. 12:05AM - 1:22AM. Three people like this. Two comments."
"Suzie Q: OMG why were you calling that slut after I went to bed?? 9:32AM."
"John Q: We were just talking about work, I swear!"

Super Sweet (4, Funny)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705124)

I believe the customization part.

Considering there audience though, I find it really, REALLY, hard to believe there will not be "feed your chickens" and "harvest your crops" buttons directly on the phone itself.

Thinking about push communications technology I can further see that the buttons would be backlit when it was actually needed. Ohhhh! We could even make hungry chicken noises as alerts!

Re:Super Sweet (3, Funny)

iammani (1392285) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705580)

Good, now I could easily identify whom to stay away from.

Re:Super Sweet (1)

farnsworth (558449) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705686)

The vision that Mark Zuckerberg talks about is using Facebook as a personal computing/communication platform. The way I read this is not that the Facebook app would be front and center, but rather that you would buy a phone, take it out of the box, log into Facebook, and have all your contacts in your address book, all your bookmarks in your browser, all your photos in your photo app, etc. I imagine this could extend to regular PCs/tablets/laptops too.

It's not for me, but I can kind of see the point. Lots of people struggle to set up a phone or computer, so having all the data that a normal person uses day-to-day be portable across the devices that a normal person uses is not a bad idea. The success will depend entirely on the implementation and how it works over time. I suspect Facebook knows this and will not sabotage their investment by taking any shortcuts. But who knows.

In any case, there's pretty much no chance that a traditional Facebook app such as Farmville will be beeping at you in the middle of the night. That's not the point of this endeavor at all.

Re:Super Sweet (1)

farnsworth (558449) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705756)

The vision that Mark Zuckerberg talks about is using Facebook as a personal computing/communication platform. The way I read this is not that the Facebook app would be front and center, but rather that you would buy a phone, take it out of the box, log into Facebook, and have all your contacts in your address book, all your bookmarks in your browser, all your photos in your photo app, etc. I imagine this could extend to regular PCs/tablets/laptops too.

It's not for me, but I can kind of see the point. Lots of people struggle to set up a phone or computer, so having all the data that a normal person uses day-to-day be portable across the devices that a normal person uses is not a bad idea. The success will depend entirely on the implementation and how it works over time. I suspect Facebook knows this and will not sabotage their investment by taking any shortcuts. But who knows.

In any case, there's pretty much no chance that a traditional Facebook app such as Farmville will be beeping at you in the middle of the night. That's not the point of this endeavor at all.

Just to reply to myself and add one more thing -- If this is indeed the vision for some of Facebook's future efforts, then there is the obvious potential pain point of storing and porting non-Facebook data. If this means that Facebook opens up and competes on features/ui/speed/etc rather than on lock-in and network effect, that is a good thing.

Nothing new here (3, Informative)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705130)

I've got the INQ 1 phone [wikipedia.org] - it was also sold as a product of collaboration between INQ and facebook, billed as "the facebook phone" as it was only £60, i.e. not smartphone territory, but mass market - I hope this is more of the same; a mass market Android phone would be great.

Re:Nothing new here (2, Interesting)

hex0D (1890162) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705274)

I'd be totally OK with facebook subsidizing some the cost of new phone; just because they intend it for use on facebook doesn't mean a lot of clever folks won't find ways to repurpose it.

And yeah, this seems about as newsworthy as the TV they keep advertising that allows you to tweet and post to FB from your sofa and has dedicated buttons on the remote. BFD.

Re:Nothing new here (2, Interesting)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705318)

Holy crap.

The INQ1 is what the Kin should've been. Cheap, fast, lightweight with 3G connectivity and Facebook/Twitter integration?

Re:Nothing new here (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705400)

Holy crap.

The INQ1 is what the Kin should've been. Cheap, fast, lightweight with 3G connectivity and Facebook/Twitter integration?

Twitter came with INQ's next two phones*, they somehow managed to forget it on the INQ 1, but for their first ever handset I can forgive them that.

*I haven't got them but I have seen them in the 3 mobile shop at mass market price: INQ mini 3G [wikipedia.org] and INQ Chat 3G [wikipedia.org]

Re:Nothing new here (1)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705346)

Another example is the "San Francisco" handset from UK carrier Orange. It's a cheapish-n-surprisingly-cheerful Android phone with 800x480 screen for around £100.
http://shop.orange.co.uk/mobile-phones/San-Francisco-from-Orange-in-grey [orange.co.uk]

Re:Nothing new here (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705414)

Another example is the "San Francisco" handset from UK carrier Orange. It's a cheapish-n-surprisingly-cheerful Android phone with 800x480 screen for around £100. http://shop.orange.co.uk/mobile-phones/San-Francisco-from-Orange-in-grey [orange.co.uk]

Thanks for that, I've been looking for a decent, cheap Android phone (INQ 1 is great, but not 'droid) - I might just have to buy it.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 3 years ago | (#33709200)

I'm not sure which INQ my brother has, but it was sold on a similar concept - Twitter/Facebook, but not full smart phone. I think he curses it pretty much every day for various features that it mishandles or just outright doesn't have that seem so obvious.

Mass-market Androids are on their way down, though. I was in a shop the other day and saw an LG at £100 on PAYG. Given that the HTCs are up at £300+ then it is definitely much closer to a mass-market price.

Re:Nothing new here (1)

VJ42 (860241) | more than 3 years ago | (#33709382)

I'm not sure which INQ my brother has, but it was sold on a similar concept - Twitter/Facebook, but not full smart phone. I think he curses it pretty much every day for various features that it mishandles or just outright doesn't have that seem so obvious.

Mass-market Androids are on their way down, though. I was in a shop the other day and saw an LG at £100 on PAYG. Given that the HTCs are up at £300+ then it is definitely much closer to a mass-market price.

Indeed, the INQ1 has no twitter integration*, has problems with some rss feeds (including /.) and if you actually leave any of the apps on, the battery life is appalling. Still at ~£60 instead of ~£300 for an HSPDA phone with skype that I can check my Gmail, facebook etc. on I'm not complaining. All in all for a debut handset I was impressed, so if their 'droid phone comes here I'll be sure to at least take a look.

*IIRC they corrected at least this obvious oversight on their next two phones; I'm told that the battery life is also better.

AT&T *AND* FACEBOOK? SIGN ME UP (TO NOT GET O (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33705158)

Facebook will release two AT&T smartphones in 2011

You lost me at "facebook"... and then again at "AT&T"...

I mean... the two companies I've managed to avoid for the last few years teaming up... wow. So how will this work? Will their phone calls route straight to AT&T's secret rooms [wired.com] or will that be an opt-out privacy option that I won't be able to find in the settings and that will then revert back to "in" three months later?

Re:AT&T *AND* FACEBOOK? SIGN ME UP (TO NOT GET (1)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 3 years ago | (#33707496)

Bloomberg News (linked above) reported that Facebook will release two AT&T smartphones in 2011, first in Europe and then in America.

For me, the article lost me when it said Facebook was going to release its AT&T phone first in Europe? I didn't even realize that AT&T was selling phones in Europe. Anyway, I hope this means that AT&T will stop charging $21,000 to the vacationers that forget to turn off data roaming while in Europe.

meh... (1)

ifeelswine (1546221) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705198)

they're just setting up for a sequel to The Social Network movie

Farmville on the phone? (1)

PmanAce (1679902) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705202)

Just great, just what I need...calling someone and them not answering because they are on Phoneville.

Oh great! I can see the endless text messages now (4, Interesting)

Chocolate Teapot (639869) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705208)

Your wife just commented on a picture posted on your secretary's MMS
kjsmith [kjsmith.co.uk] and 6 other lawyers like this

Re:Oh great! I can see the endless text messages n (1)

DavidD_CA (750156) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708324)

[Like]

"pure semantics" (1)

jpate (1356395) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705256)

What is the non-technical meaning of the word "semantics"? Non-linguists seem to use it to mean "deceptive, distractingly nitpicking, or misleading speech." Is that what it's meant to mean in the summary?

Well this kinda explains it (1)

soilheart (1081051) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705260)

I think this very well explain why the Facebook Android App is so bad.

It auto loads images whether you want it or not and all notifications link to the touch.facebook.com homepage.

(Not to speak of the "always keep phone awake draining battery"-bug that the last version suffered from).

Re:Well this kinda explains it (1)

JackAxe (689361) | more than 3 years ago | (#33707866)

Or it will mean that their phone is equally as bad. What bothers me along with their app being crap, is that I can't uninstall it from my Nexus One without rooting it. The dam thing is read only... *grumbles*

Don't get it (1)

tcr (39109) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705302)

If this has been going on "for some time", then I can only assume they have been overtaken by events.

The Facebook app for Android is pretty well featured, and the default Contacts app hooks in to it if you choose to FB authenticate. So you can see the last status update of all your contacts.

I don't see why they need a dedicated Facebook/Android handset... unless it's a marketing exercise, or they are trying to make the FB status updates/notifications more intrusive. Just seems to me like they are taking the featurephone mindset, and applying it to a smartphone (where IMHO it is redundant).

Re:Don't get it (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705340)

After the wild success of the kin, it would stupid not to!

Phones name? GAF(google/ATT/facebook) (1)

schwit1 (797399) | more than 3 years ago | (#33705312)

Or your can swap the first and third letters.

Dilemma (1)

dragonhunter21 (1815102) | more than 3 years ago | (#33706174)

Support Android, and by doing so support Facebook? Or ditch Facebook, and by doing so ditch Android? Eh. I'll stick with my Droid for now, thankyouverymuch.

Complete crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33706626)

> two At&t smartphones
> first in Europe
AT&T in Europe? Great article

Some sort of 'social' framwork/API (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708298)

You can read the long and not very interesting interview [techcrunch.com] but if you can believe anything Zuckerberg says, they're building a framework for mobile devices that lets apps hook into the FB social network. They don't have the time to build their own OS, so it'll probably be on Android.

They wish everything supported HTML5 so they could stop writing platform-specific apps, but recognize the realities of the market.

It was a couple days ago, but that seems to be all I got out of it.

Re:Some sort of 'social' framwork/API (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33708910)

Related to this: Zuckerberg is being a little dishonest when he asks "why can't mobile devices integrate better with Facebook and other services?" -- implying that mobile developers aren't doing what they should... In the real world the problem is that Facebook won't let us. I work for a company that has implemented Facebook integration in a mobile device but cannot release the feature because dealing with Facebook legal is just impossible. Their licensing terms mean that anyone doing this sort of deep integration is basically giving every ace in the pack to Facebook and just hopes FB won't use them against the integrator.

I'm guessing we have spent more on lawyers than on developers at this point, and I've heard our position is not even close to being unique. I can't really blame Facebook from a business perspective: it is now in a position where it can hold the entire industry in a choke hold -- why wouldn't they do it?

Other product suggestions? (1)

Acetylane_Rain (1894120) | more than 3 years ago | (#33708944)

How about a netbook called FaceBook? Or a co-branded release of Firefox or Chrome called FaceBrowser?
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