) is holding a
next week. The firm will not say what it plans to show attendees,
but many are speculating that it will be a smartphone or a new
feature added to the site. Mark Zuckerberg, the social network's
famed co-founder and CEO, has previously stated that brand-specific
hardware is a
. Regardless, the tech industry is still buzzing over rumors of the
possibility that the firm could change its mind.
After all, Apple (NASDAQ:
) co-founder Steve Jobs famously said that seven-inch tablets were
. The Mac maker changed its mind last year and released the iPad
Mini, a small tablet that has already been purchased by
millions of consumers
However, anyone can guess that Facebook is building a phone now
that the other major tech companies -- including Amazon (NASDAQ:
) -- are expected to do the same. Even Google (NASDAQ:
) (a software company) teamed up with Asus, LG and Samsung to build
the Nexus brand of tablets and smartphones. It formed similar
partnerships to build the Chromebook.
Aside from a smartphone, tablet or any other silly gadget
analysts can think of, what are some of the things that Facebook
could unveil next week?
New Device Integration
Roughly 18 months ago HTC unveiled a smartphone that contained a
. It was the first of its kind. The BlackBerry-style design proved
to be unpopular, however, with sales figures rumored to be
. In 2012, HTC's entire portfolio of phones proved to be so
lackluster that the firm
stopped revealing its sales figures
Nonetheless, rumors persist that HTC is working on an even
better Facebook-friendly phone that will take social media
integration to a whole other level.
More Gifts For the Friends You "Like"
If Facebook wants to become a highly profitable firm, it needs
to find a way to monetize its one billion members. One way might be
to charge a few bucks for a message that all of your friends will
instantly see. Another might be to sell them as many physical goods
as humanly possible.
A Stronger Push Toward Gaming
Facebook is in an interesting (if not challenging) position
right now. The company has one billion members that it could
potentially transform into dedicated/addicted gamers.
At the same time, Facebook's biggest partner in gaming, Zynga
), is currently dying.
statistics show that the firm currently has 265.3 million MAUs
(monthly active users), down from
270.8 million MAUs
on December 28. In the prior 20 days, Zynga lost more than 23
Thus, if Facebook wants gaming to be a big part of its future,
it is going to have to start developing its own games.
Facebook did not pay $1 billion for Instagram without reason.
The company had a plan -- perhaps several plans -- for what the app
could do for Facebook in the future.
If Facebook wants to show investors and consumers that the
purchase was worthwhile, its announcement could be tailored to
Instagram. At the very least it could involve the team behind the
Greater Integration with Automobiles
Is it merely a coincidence that Facebook plans to make a big
announcement the day after the media preview begins for the North
American International Auto Show? Most likely, yes -- it is a
However, with so many tech companies -- including Apple and
Rhapsody -- turning to automobiles for new sources of revenue, it
is possible that Facebook could be doing the same.
With a Facebook-integrated car, users could feasibly "check in"
to every location simply by driving there, without the need for
accessing the Foursquare app on their phones. Facebook could also
add a camera system that allowed users to instantly share their
driving experiences with the world.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice.
All rights reserved.
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