This Facebook smartphone mockup that surfaced around the blogsphere last week is indeed impressive, yet I don’t believe a facebook phone would make a lot of sense.
Take a look at the mobile devices landscape: you have 2 successful companies: Apple and Samsung.
All the others are struggling: some manage to keep up (HTC?) while the others are really doing bad (Nokia, RIM), and that is, without talking about the ones who already ceased to exist in this space… (Palm, Ericsson), or have been acquired (Motorola).
That’s not a pleasant view, isn’t it? And that’s when everybody is talking about a mobile era. Imagine what will happen in 1-2 years from now.
Two weeks ago I’ve been listening to a lecture by Dov Moran, inventor of the successful DiskOnKey [by M-Systems], and the failing Modu. He started his lecture by saying that the mobile market is dead, talking about the tough situation many mobile companies are facing.
It really made me think about it… No, I don’t think mobile is dead, but it is, without a doubt, a topic that is already becoming commodity. Once it does, no one will talk about “mobility” as if it’s a special technology. It will just be there.
Back to this facebook smartphone concept:
This phone concept looks amazing, and we heard that facebook is hiring ex-Apple designers and engineers.
And yet, it seems to me like facebook will have to invent something extremely unique in order to come up with something which is truly attractive. having more of the same and calling it facebook phone will not be enough.
At the moment there are only 2 successful mobile operating systems out there: Android and iOS.
Microsoft is trying badly to get in this race, and so far without a lot of success – what can facebook bring to the mobile table that Microsoft can’t? I doubt if the company with a site that can be an encyclopedia for bad user interface, can come up with a true innovative phone.
Another question might be: what can facebook have in a facebook phone that cannot be easily copied and implemented by Apple and Google in iOS or Android?
I don’t think it can, although I would love to be wrong about this one.
This Android / iOS stuff is becoming a bit boring anyhow...