Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg refuted reports that his brainchild social network would introduce its very own smartphone in the near future.
He told analysts in a conference call it “wouldn’t make very much sense” to make a Facebook-centered smartphone. The dismissal shortly followed the company’s earnings call for the second quarter of this year.
“Facebook is the most-used app on basically every mobile platform,” he justified. “So when we think about what we want to do right now, we want increase the depth of the experience in addition to just growing users.”
“We want to not just have apps that people use but also be as deeply integrated into these systems as possible,” Zuckerberg continued. “We want to support a development ecosystem where other apps can build on top of Facebook.”
“That’s why you’ll see us do things like support Apple and the iOS integration that they wanted to do,” he added. “There are lots of things that you can build in other operating systems as well that aren’t building out a whole phone, which I really don’t think would make very much sense for us to do.”
Regardless of his denial that the company is currently in the works with a Facebook-branded smartphone, rumors keep on circulating information regarding the particular device.
A Bloomberg report said the Facebook smartphone will be a partnership with Taiwanese handset maker HTC, has a “modified” operating system, and will arrive next year.
The enticing but dangerous appeal of producing hardware has increasingly been hard to ignore in the tech industry. Online search and advertising giant Google has expanded into the business with its Nexus smartphones and tablet; giant online retailer Amazon has its Kindle line; and even Microsoft has decided to climb onboard with its upcoming Surface tablets.
Zuckerberg apparently finds good intention in staying out of the hardware industry for now.
“We believe that all these consumer products, even more than consumer products, that people use will become social over time,” he said, “but we can’t build all those things ourselves so we focused on building this platform.”
However, he admitted, “over time, it might make sense for us to build more of these things ourselves.”
Facebook launched its initial public offering (IPO) in May of this year to much fanfare but dipped by as much as 23 percent since then. In its first quarter as a public company, it had $1.18 billion in revenues but lost $157 million, an 8 percent decline.
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