) is set to make another announcement Thursday. Will it involve a
new phone, a new app or something entirely unexpected?
published an interesting piece on the matter, stating that
Facebook will unveil a "rich, skinned version of its Android
app," along with the "first hardware to run that experience out
of the box."
Without citing any particular source, 9to5Google claimed that
the HTC handset will be titled 'First.' Interestingly,
(both cited later in the story) did not refer to the HTC device
Adam Leach, a principal device analyst at Ovum, is a little
baffled by the rumored announcement.
"…Why is Facebook doing anything at all?" Leach questioned in
an e-mail to the press this morning. "The company wants to
increase its engagement with its users and in particular its
users accessing the service over mobile. To achieve this Facebook
needs a mechanism to deliver its own services to a portfolio of
devices. If this can be achieved with an Android Facebook skin or
a co-branded phone, then this will be better for Facebook as it
avoids upsetting its current phone and platform partners and
removes the immediate need to launch its own branded
While Facebook's path is not yet known, eMarketer (a research
firm that specializes in digital marketing trends, media and
commerce) estimated that the social networking giant will earn
30 percent of the $7.29 billion
that advertisers are expected to spend on mobile this year.
eMarketer believes that Google (NASDAQ:
) will take more than half of the total ad dollars spent in
In theory, a phone could help Facebook achieve that 30 percent
Dieter Bohn does not think that Facebook will release a branded
"Facebook can't win, place, or even show in the smartphone
market share horse race," Bohn wrote. "Instead of putting its own
horse on the track, it's putting a jockey on a winner:
Bohn expects the rumored Facebook Home application to merely
sit on top of Android, thus allowing all existing Android users
to take advantage of the software. HTC may launch a new phone to
ride the wave of hype -- but that does not mean it is an official
Where does this leave Amazon (NASDAQ:
)? While the tech world is buzzing with hype for an HTC-related
announcement, the Amazon trail has gone cold.
One of the more recent rumors suggested that Amazon may hold
back its phone -- whether tied to Facebook, Android or any other
platform/service -- due to
supply chain issues
. The online retailer may also be looking to employ
new, low-power display technology
Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer
of Benzinga. You can reach him at 248-636-1322 or
firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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