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New Facebook-Branded Android Coming?

timothy posted about a year ago | from the oh-did-you-want-those-calls-chronologically? dept.

Facebook 112

Earthquake Retrofit writes "The Register reports that 'Facebook has sent out invitations to an event at its Menlo Park headquarters next week that many believe will see the launch of a new, Facebook-branded smartphone...' I have lately become disillusioned with Google having so much power over my phone and the usual privacy concerns, so this announcement means I now have a choice. Oh, wait..."

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So, (5, Insightful)

Georules (655379) | about a year ago | (#43316301)

who actually wants this?

TWEENS!! (2, Insightful)

Bananatree3 (872975) | about a year ago | (#43316331)

Seriously though, any young teen who's already Facebook obsessed probably wouldn't think twice....not like some graybeard's privacy concerns matter (until they're that age, sigh..)

Re:TWEENS!! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#43316365)

Seriously though, any young teen who's already Facebook obsessed probably wouldn't think twice....not like some graybeard's privacy concerns matter (until they're that age, sigh..)

Might be useful if (horrors) your child is abducted -- they'll know every business they go past.

Re:TWEENS!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316577)

Yeah, because abducting kids these days is hip. Happens all the time! Like terrorists blowing up airplanes in midair.

Re:TWEENS!! (0)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#43316723)

Yeah, because abducting kids these days is hip. Happens all the time! Like terrorists blowing up airplanes in midair.

I take it you don't read the news. There's this thing called Amber Alerts. We have one about every month out here.

Re:TWEENS!! (4, Informative)

lxs (131946) | about a year ago | (#43317375)

Just because it is put on the news more often these days doesn't mean that it happens more often. In fact in Europe and the US child abduction happens less these days than 20 or 40 years ago. Still not a good idea for kids to to walk off with strangers but not the minefield the media will have you believe.

Re:TWEENS!! (-1, Troll)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year ago | (#43316899)

Is this greenish ick on the sole of my shoe the remnant of your misplaced brain?

That is the fucking stupidest comment I've read all week.

You are obviously not a parent, and you evidently do not read the news.

(And yes, kids get *kidnapped* all the time.)

Re:TWEENS!! (3, Insightful)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about a year ago | (#43317367)

That's the the point, you mindless parent, read statistics, not "the news". The news don't give you a reasonable overview over what to worry about, they mostly hype random stuff while distracting you from things that actually matter. That you're a parent doesn't entitle you to be stupid, it's actually the other way around.

You'd rather hand over ALL children to the predators that is marketing, just so you know where the kidnapping of a select few (in comparison) took place? Let's just throw the kids to the lions, on the off chance they might be kidnapped, because journalism can't be arsed to inform citizens on the stuff they need to keep their democracy intact and movies are so scary. That's nuts to me. It's not like it can prevent anything, or will magically make them easily retrievable, you know, it just might help a bit after the fact.

Re:TWEENS!! (-1, Flamebait)

skitchen8 (1832190) | about a year ago | (#43317405)

Are you stupid or just stupid? You're saying because less kids are kidnapped now nobody should worry about their kid being kidnapped. Less people die of dysentery then they used to, I think I'll go ahead and stick with clean water though. If your child gets kidnapped statistics don't mean a damn thing. To anyone with a life worth living there are more important things than "keeping democracy intact" by going on angry diatribes over the internet. Hell, even us "mindless parent[s]" are smart enough to realize you can't keep a democracy intact when you live in a republic. Some more of us are even active members of our communities, maybe even local governments, and I promise you that does a lot more good for the country than going on brainless rants about how mindless parents are for caring about their children when there are legitimate fears like The Man spying on your every move. Also, since you are stupid: the comment you were originally replying to was sarcasm. If you're not intelligent enough to recognize obvious sarcasm then maybe the comments section of Slashdot isn't the best place for you. Judging by how twisted you got your panties over this the best place for you is likely either to stay in your mom's basement, or a straight jacket.

Re:TWEENS!! (1)

umghhh (965931) | about a year ago | (#43317727)

I do not think GP actually said what you think was said. Quite frankly if you want to throw abuse then do but think twice. GP exaggerated of course (with lions etc) but low chance of your kid being kidnapped does not mean that you have to go for facebook shit. Neither is this the only option nor is it protecting your kid from anything so stop throwing abuse and think. There is no reason to get hysterical on this. The GGGP post was possibly not very serious but neither is facebook serious about doing anything good to people - their only concern is how best sell your private data. If you think that this helps in anything than I think we do not really have anything to discuss. I have 3 kids myself and there are things that keep me awake at night but you cannot protect the kids from everything without actually damaging them or damaging rights of other people. Neither you can protect them with FB - rather contrary is true considering how much bullying is done thanxt to social media. Whether facebook is damaging your democracy may be a subject of a discussion (I do not think one is needed really but that is me) - GP obviously think it is. You just throw silly abuse at the guy instead of taking part in a discussion. Lookingat this from distance - you are much worse than FB - if that is true that you are an active member of your community that maybe not so good for it then. I cannot stop wondering : are you member of Tea Party?

Re:TWEENS!! (1)

umghhh (965931) | about a year ago | (#43317773)

Oh I just noticed I threw abuse to (the TP comment at the end) - I apologize for this. That was not needed.

Re:TWEENS!! (0)

skitchen8 (1832190) | about a year ago | (#43318441)

I'm guessing your entire comment was written sarcastically because I could not do anything but laugh as I read it. I sure hope so at least, otherwise I am truly worried about you. I also like how Tea Party is the new hip insult. Do you know what the Tea Party is, or do you just suggest anyone you don't like must be a member? Not a thing in my comments would have suggested any sort of alignment with the ideals of the Tea Party, so I must assume you are also just an idiot. The final hilarious part of your comment is you suggesting that I am defending Facebook or something, despite me not mentioning the company even once in my post. Actually, come to think of it, I am not convinced you read either my post or the one i was responding to. That makes more sense to me.

Re:TWEENS!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43317733)

I don't know the OPs original intent but...

People watch the news and hype and then react on it. What they are reacting on may be a real threat but there are many other threats out there that do not generate as much hype and they blow them off because of that.

More kids are injured and killed every year from a CRT television falling on then from being shot by a gun. Watch the "news" and listen to politicians jumping on the gun hype on television and you would never know that.
http://www.mommyish.com/2012/12/14/falling-televisions-dangerous-risk-to-child-safety/ [mommyish.com]
http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Newsroom/News-Releases/2013/The-Tipping-Point-Highest-Number-of-TV-and-Furniture-Tip-Over-Deaths-Recorded-By-CPSC-in-2011/ [cpsc.gov]

Re:TWEENS!! (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about a year ago | (#43317753)

"You're saying because less kids are kidnapped now nobody should worry about their kid being kidnapped"

Thanks for your input, Captain Reading Comprehension ^^

Re:TWEENS!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43318213)

Oh darn! I was going fix your original such that it read "that's what the politicians want you to believe" instead of news, but then one of their prime target constituents came out with that diatribe that probably brought tears to politicians everywhere...

Re:TWEENS!! (3, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43316503)

I'm sure that MS thought the same thing about the Kin when they tried that. Didn't work out so well, I'd be surprised if a FB themed item did very well.

Re:So, (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#43316355)

who actually wants this?

I find the Facebook interface on the web to be poorly thought out and composed. I can't imagine the phone would be an improvement. Particularly paying these loafers for their phone. Never mind they'll probably track everywhere you go and everything you say will be scanned for products and businesses. Sounds like not just a bad idea, but a horrible one.

Re:So, (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#43316563)

Their Android application was worse. When I dropped off FaceBook (effectively) this was a big reason why. I was a resource hogging, battery sucking piece of crap with a lousy interface. I think the only people that do a worse Android app might be Rogers Communications. FaceBook has treated Android like a second-class citizen for years ... strange that they'd use it as a base for their phone after their handling of it to date.

Re:So, (1)

rwa2 (4391) | about a year ago | (#43316627)

Yeah, Facebook is one of the few apps I don't install on any of my Android devices. I'm generally pretty lax with my private info... However, it's one thing for an app to upload all of my behavior and info to a website, but an app that uploads the personal info of all of the people in my addressbook to their database and actively pimps it out to the rest of my acquaintances... that's a bit more responsibility than I'm prepared to take.

Re:So, (2)

MacGyver2210 (1053110) | about a year ago | (#43316653)

The app on Android was abysmal at best. I couldn't properly shut it down(not sure how it kept restarting itself with no input). I would have to go into the settings window and manually kill the task every couple hours or it would start up and 'sync' something(even after I told it not to sync anything). It would also turn on notifications randomly every couple days even after I disabled them. I have since removed it and canceled my FB account(fuck FB, seriously, what a waste of time).

Hands-down the absolute worst app ever created for a smartphone. After trying it for a couple weeks, I would rather intentionally download several horrible viruses.

Re:So, (4, Informative)

digitalchinky (650880) | about a year ago | (#43316739)

Lots of apps latch on to a myriad of system events so they can relaunch themselves - some are fairly obscene in how they go about this.

One good solution is to install "Autorun Manager" - it allows you to disable the receivers on a per application basis. Once you kill something, it stays dead until you explicitly start it again.

Re:So, (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43317133)

The app on Android was pretty much on par with the current state of the art for Android applications.

FTFY. That Facebook's app on Android was an abortion is no surprise to anybody who's ever spent more than 2 minutes browsing the Google Play store. MOST of the apps available for Android are shit.

Re:So, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43319367)

Shit is an understatement.

Re:So, (4, Insightful)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#43316657)

Microsoft has a significant investment in Facebook. It's kind of like Netflix avoiding Android right up until they just couldn't anymore - and then Netflix founder and CEO Reed Hastings leaving Microsoft's board of directors shortly thereafter to "focus on his own company's needs".

Re:So, (4, Funny)

worf_mo (193770) | about a year ago | (#43316811)

I was a resource hogging, battery sucking piece of crap with a lousy interface.

Don't worry, we all went through this phase called adolescence. Work on your interface and keep your head up!

Re:So, (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#43317301)

I was a resource hogging, battery sucking piece of crap with a lousy interface.

But you got better?

Re:So, (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | about a year ago | (#43317067)

The facebook UI is not intended to be usable it is intended to be entertaining.

Re:So, (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316373)

You could ask the same about Facebook itself,yet, hundreds of millions of people seem to want it.

Go figure.

Re:So, (4, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#43316727)

You could ask the same about Facebook itself,yet, hundreds of millions of people seem to want it.

Go figure.

And before Facebook there was something called MySpace, which was a worse interface. When Google, or maybe Yahoo, gets their sh*t together, they could come up with a much better interface and kill off Facebook. Honestly, it wouldn't take a lot.

Re:So, (2)

Gordonjcp (186804) | about a year ago | (#43317039)

Now would be a good time, too, because they've just changed the page layouts again and people are moaning about it.

If you want to get customers to jump ship (and yes, you are a paying customer; you pay with information like geotagging restaurants and shops you visit) then bring along a better product right at the point where people are starting to dislike what they already use, and make the transition quick and painless. "Hi, sign up for Placescroll and import all your facebook data *for free*!" and give them the option to upload their saved-off facebook.zip file to prepopulate their friends lists, messages, posts etc.

Re:So, (2)

s.petry (762400) | about a year ago | (#43316539)

who actually wants this?

Probably a very very small percentage of people. However, given the current desire to track everyone and snoop on what everyone does, these will be crammed down everyone's throats. Facebook popularity has been dropping steadily. Not for the reasons I hope (privacy) but because Facebook is stale and old news. Facebook bloomed when MySpace tanked (and of course was part of the cause). Facebook has no competition, and none will be allowed to compete unless it can do all of the same poor (and I don't mean financially) things Facebook can do. Which means that it won't be replaced, people will just be forced to use that or nothing.

Re:So, (2)

thegarbz (1787294) | about a year ago | (#43316833)

Everybody I think.

One of the best selling phones in my country before the iPhone came out actually had a Facebook button, yes a whole button dedicated to it. Never under-estimate what will appeal to the non-slashdot crowd.

Re:So, (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#43317305)

One of the best selling phones in my country before the iPhone came out actually had a Facebook button, yes a whole button dedicated to it.

Because people wanted it, or because Facebook paid to have it put there?

Re:So, (2)

Georules (655379) | about a year ago | (#43317663)

That phone was a complete flop and laughed at in the United States.

Facebook (2)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#43317203)

It might be helpful here to know that Microsoft was an early investor in Facebook, and retains a significant stake.

Neh, doesn't matter (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316305)

F-book is a cunt. Simply annoying. Reject the drinking of the kool-aid!

Re:Neh, doesn't matter (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316629)

Reject the drinking of the kool-aid? When did Apple buy Facebook?

The worst thing (3, Insightful)

bobstreo (1320787) | about a year ago | (#43316309)

It will probably be one of the only qwerty keyboarded android phones available.

Re:The worst thing (1)

MacGyver2210 (1053110) | about a year ago | (#43316661)

You know, except the Moto Droid line...which also happens to be the best Android phone line in production.

Re:The worst thing (1)

tangent3 (449222) | about a year ago | (#43318227)

Too bad there hasn't been a new Droid phone for a while, and it's worse for us Milestone lovers outside of the US.
I've been waiting for a new Milestone to replace my Milestone 2, but gave up and bought an LG Optimus G instead, and found that I can survive without a qwerty keyboard.

Re:The worst thing (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#43316709)

If the hardware actually is interesting, you'll be able to root and install your favorite ROM a month after release, tops. You'd still have the facebook branding on the hardware though...

Re:The worst thing (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year ago | (#43316933)

My Android devices have no trouble switching between US, Scandinavian, and pinyin keyboard modes.

Can you not get anything newer than Cupcake over there?

Re:The worst thing (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#43317311)

I think GP means a physical keyboard. I've seen them called "qwerty keyboards" all over the place, which is of course silly.

And the usual privacy concerns? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316317)

Hilarious, a lot of the creepy Google privacy concerns are there because they've seen how far Facebook pushes the envelope and think they can too.

I'm under no doubt Facebooks phone will be sending constant tracking data to Facebook and they'll sell that data to anyone who wants it for any reason, and simply bury some button down in the privacy settings that defaults to consent.

Re:And the usual privacy concerns? (1)

l3v1 (787564) | about a year ago | (#43316413)

"and simply bury some button down in the privacy settings that defaults to consent"

Neh, nothing like that, just a popup at the first powerup saying "I forever agree to everything in the daily changing terms of service" with two buttons, OK and "I agree". Not that it would matter, anyone who would buy a Facebook phone would not loose a second's sleep over that.

Re:And the usual privacy concerns? (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43316511)

That's an improvement over the current system for services where they regularly change the ToS and EULAs and don't leave you with a viable opt out that doesn't include having to deal with the massive PITA that is moving your data, assuming you're even permitted to download it.

Re:And the usual privacy concerns? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316669)

a lot of the creepy Google privacy concerns

Can you give examples?

Re:And the usual privacy concerns? (-1, Troll)

MacGyver2210 (1053110) | about a year ago | (#43316687)

I don't understand these 'creepy Google privacy concerns'. Is it astoundingly computer-illiterate people buying into MS's 'scroogled' ads? Is it people just not understanding the way phones, apps, software, operating systems, and the internet as a whole work? If you know how to run and manage your devices, Android is an excellent operating system with almost no privacy concerns to speak of.

If you're Jane Dipshit who just buys it from the AT&T(Worst.Company.Ever.) store and powers it up, of course it's full of bloatware and invasive shit. This is what I (less than) affectionately call the 'Mac Syndrome'. "I have a Mac, and it just does what I want it right away. I shouldn't have to know how this computer stuff works, durrrrrr.... OMG Google is spying! The competitors said so!" *drools on self*

If you want to use a computer, you should be required to at least understand in a broad sense how a computer works. What is a hard drive, what is RAM, what is a network, etc. Mac Syndrome is much like driving a Ferrari without knowing what the wheels do. I can only imagine how many Macfools are flipping their shit without any more optical media.

No, Googles policy change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316961)

" Is it astoundingly computer-illiterate people buying into MS's 'scroogled' ads"

No, what got me was Googles change of privacy policy linking all the data together and the way their ads became ultra-personal. I think MS's involvement is opportunistic but the problem remains even if MS went away.

I don't want anymore frank discussions with my wife because 'divorce lawyer' targetted adverts start appearing on my PC, and the way Youtube usage got stored and linked to Gmail accounts irritates the hell out of me. Then there's the 'link account' link it offers me at signout, the real names G+ thing, the way I can't like a site using a gmail account unless I agree to sign up to G+, the way I can't have an Android phone unless I also sign in and accept Googles account, why? Why should I have to accept Google terms to use a phone I just bought? Then there's the block workarounds, I started blocking google domains to block the tracking via analytics, and adsense, and then 1e100 started popping up, it seems they keep swapping urls each time to get around users blocking Google snooping.

Really, Google, enough.

Re:No, Googles policy change (2)

psiclops (1011105) | about a year ago | (#43317069)

No, what got me was Googles change of privacy policy linking all the data together ...
the way I can't like a site using a gmail account unless I agree to sign up to G+

so you're upset that you can't use features of G+ without signing up to G+ and wish you could just use your gmail account. you think it would be better if they just merged the two into say, one single account?

Not can't, won't (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43317631)

"so you're upset that you can't use features of G+ without signing up to G+ and wish you could just use your gmail account"

No, not 'can't', 'won't'. I won't accept a G+ account, so I consider the requirement a deal breaker. If I can vote up a youtube video (it use to be possible), why does any other vote up require a G+ profile be created? It doesn't! It's a choice Google made that reduces my privacy in exchange for voting something up. But it's a dealbreaker, and I don't vote stuff up because of it.

" you think it would be better if they just merged the two into say, one single account?"
They did already, for the purpose of tracking and surveillance they did that. For THEIR gain it's been merged, not for mine. Why would I want all the privacy invading g+ stuff for things that use to be possible without it? As I said, why should I face 'divorce lawyer' ads if I get an email about divorce?!

Likewise the Android phone, I went for a Samsung bada phone rather than have a snoopy Google phone and its proved to be a good choice. I have an Android tablet, but I'd like to get rid of the Google part of it and obviously won't be switching to a FB or MS tablet since they're worse. I sort of assume generic Android tablets will become the norm. I don't want to use Google maps if its matching my locations against my details.

My wife has a fake gmail account for her android tablet. Obviously sharing location is turned off, its none of goog's business where she is at any point in time. That was her solution to Google snooping, but its only a partial fix.

Youtube, I don't sign into, when I finally ditch Gmail that should rid me the of the accidental tracking when I forget to log out of gmail. They linked those accounts against my wishes.

That leaves search, currently I mix Google and duckduckgo, I've occasionally forgot to log out from Gmail when searching, and was appalled to see it was logging my searches against my gmail. F-U google, I've never ever signed up for personal search, so why does it share that info?

It's a pity Microsoft have jumped on the Google privacy bandwagon, people don't like MS and so dismiss anything they say. In effect they weakened the arguments about Google privacy problems. But getting past that, there is a huge problem with Google, when Page took over, he seemed to decide that any info they had was fair game, and as a result the company became creepy and tried to match FB's abuse of private info.

Re:And the usual privacy concerns? (1)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about a year ago | (#43316693)

Hilarious, a lot of the creepy Google privacy concerns are there because they've seen how far Facebook pushes the envelope and think they can too.

I don't think Google is a "We can too" operation, they've done pushed past the envelope many times.

Google already has their own "Android", the Motorola Xoom 3G/4G sold by Verizon. While it can be used as a phone,
I imagine that function used mostly for video chatting.

Another version of the Xoom is just a tablet no 3G/4G, which I have. Normally one would log into Google and stay logged in.
Those with security concerns like myself log in only when needed then log out when done.
Going one better I also disable the WiFi.

Never used the Xoom 3G phone but here's a simulator which shows it's very much like the Amazon Kindle
(just more expensive and very nice).
http://support.verizonwireless.com/simulator/Motorola/xoom/simulator.html [verizonwireless.com]
It's branded Google with no mention of Verizon, and one shops at the Google store https://play.google.com/store [google.com]

As sold by Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Motorola-Android-Tablet-Verizon-Wireless/dp/B004NNVHUC [amazon.com]

Motorola Xoom is at it's end life, It's last Android version was 4.1, but rooted I have 4.2.1.

I've had it with google. (1)

goombah99 (560566) | about a year ago | (#43316729)

I use bing now. sadly, it's not as good. but google is just going bad. I actually believe MS when they do the scroogled ads. I'm not saying they are more privacy conscious out of the goodness of their heart, but I believe they see it as a wedge issue and will stick to it for now it least. Needless to say I don't facebook either.

Bing privacy statement...MicroSpys (4, Informative)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43316755)

http://www.microsoft.com/privacystatement/en-gb/bing/default.aspx [microsoft.com]

"We collect information when you register, sign in and use our sites and services. We may also get information from other companies. We collect this information in a variety of ways, including from web forms, technologies such as cookies, web logging and software on your computer or other device.

When you conduct a search, Microsoft collects the following:

        Search term and time and date of your search
        IP address, browser configuration and approximate location
        Any unique identifiers contained in the cookies"

and...

"we may use search query data for the purpose of personalising the ads we display to you as you use our services or those of our advertising partners."

and...

"Using our sites, applications and services - We collect information that tells us how you interact with our applications or services, including the browser you’re using, your IP address, location, cookies or other unique IDs, the pages you visit and features you use.
Data from other sources - We may get additional information about you, such as demographic data we purchase from other companies. As discussed in the Facebook Personalization section below, we may also obtain certain information from Facebook to enable personalization features."

We all know here than Microsoft is using a Double standard here, and is a more oppressive company.

Duckduck go (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316779)

You might try duck duck go, I suspect they use Bing API too and probably count as Bing usage, but its an extra layer between you and the massive corp hoovering up all the data.

I think Microsoft ownership of Skype (FBI warrant free friendly) and Windows (which discloses VPN connections to them) mean I'd like a layer between them and me on the search data too. Duckduckgo is that layer.

I branded your moms ass last nite (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316339)

Check her hosts file 9 months from now.

I have a Yahoo! Phone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316363)

I have a Yahoo! Phone!.
I don't care, either.
Discuss.

Great, Just What Phones Need (2)

FuzzNugget (2840687) | about a year ago | (#43316397)

More tracking.

Re:Great, Just What Phones Need (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316787)

Well, your android phone doesn't necessarily track you at all. Also, there are about 8 trillion other phones that aren't android phones, so you're welcome to use one of those.

But just keep whining about how powerless you all are.

Google should be concerned... (0)

bogaboga (793279) | about a year ago | (#43316437)

I'm sure folks at Google are filled with anxiety. You see, with Microsoft as a Facebook investor and Android being "open", Google products could be replaced with Microsoft's very easily. And that can't be good. Remember, we're addressing over a billion human beings at Facebook.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#43316495)

Except for the problem that none of MS's offerings could possibly installed on a low yo medium end smart device.

Re:Google should be concerned... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316691)

ALL of Microsoft's mobile offerings are on low-end devices. Have you see the specs of their overpriced crap?

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about a year ago | (#43316911)

This is sadly true.

Window phone 8 isn't horrible. But they seem to be way too slow getting top end phones to market, the best WP8 phones are still dual core. When android is talking about 4+4 core GS4's or the like.

Ironically, Microsoft might actually be the lesser of the available evils when it comes to privacy, development environment, support and they could easily be more pro hacking than they are now. But well... they're 3 years late to the party.

Microsoft Supports Tyranny (2)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43317001)

Windows Phone

No Windows phone is terrible,in every way. The latest saga of bribing developers to set up RSS web site applications to artificially inflate their App store numbers is a disgrace. Windows phone 7 actually gained some positive reviews and since then its just been burning through that karma. As for Privacy, Microsoft is a disgrace, I think the way they acted in china says it all. http://searchengineland.com/google-china-congressional-praise-38796 [searchengineland.com]

Microsoft should be more concerned... (1, Interesting)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43316543)

I'm sure folks at Google are filled with anxiety. You see, with Microsoft as a Facebook investor and Android being "open", Google products could be replaced with Microsoft's very easily. And that can't be good. Remember, we're addressing over a billion human beings at Facebook.

Google are too busy laughing their asses off right now. Microsoft...you might not have noticed, although I'm somewhat surprised, with their astronomical advertising budget. Have their own Windows Phone OS, its not very popular...but it has very little going for it, facebook was one of those things its what they paid for. Microsoft also have been pushing the idea of third platform (I'm not convinced either), but Facebook sound more credible than Microsoft.

Apple have already cut back their facebook integration after the facephone was announced (they should have started their own social network), and I expect to see much more Google+ all over the place...Google give Apple an Alleged $1Billion.

Personally I love the way Facebook has moved from Allie to Enemy to the benefit of Google, you have to remember that Facebook/Apple is a bigger threat to Google than Microsoft in the world of the Pack of four. Microsoft has more to fear from Chrome+Google Docs.

Re:Microsoft should be more concerned... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316601)

The Windows phone -- the Zune of smart phones!

Zune is the Judas MP3 Player. (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43316695)

The Windows phone -- the Zune of smart phones!

I think the Zune comparison is a kindness, Zune never failed through its own merits, it sort of failed by being second best, but it was positively received. I think since then Microsoft has burned through too much karma, but Zune was built on the back of the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_PlaysForSure [wikipedia.org] PlayForSure betrayal....at least it killed OGG ;). We are still waiting for Microsoft to betray Nokia and produce the Microsoft Windows Phone...which would be the Zune of Smartphones...I give it [and Elop] six months.

Re:Microsoft should be more concerned... (0)

tokencode (1952944) | about a year ago | (#43317285)

I'll probably get modded off of /. for saying this... but I've owned an iPhone, Android (Galaxy) and a WP and my WP8 phone is by far my favorite as well as the most stable (stability is important to me) phone I've owned.

Re:Microsoft should be more concerned... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316633)

Ah Tuppe666, here for his daily pro-Google fap

Re:Google should be concerned... (2, Insightful)

fermion (181285) | about a year ago | (#43316557)

It is said that people are buying samsung phones, not google phones, so if Facebook can talk the android stack, take out the google assets, and put facebook tracking, then yes google will have competition and something to worry about. Facebook is at a disadvantage because it does not have a mobile profile. Google is at an advantage because millions of users are paying it to track and collect personal data that it can then sell. Millions of users are learning that the web is not google, as it so clearly was 5 years ago, but Facebook. And if you think that fortunes cannot change quickly, just look at AOL. At one time a dominant force, but it fell quickly.

The only thing that google has, frankly, is the best mapping service on the planet. This is the only thing that keeps a smart phone from going google free.

Samsung is a bigger threat. (2)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43316575)

It is said that people are buying samsung phones, not google phones

No people are buying Android (Which is Googles first Party Applications) phones...and Samsung make some best one [and advertise them successfully] , we have already seen HTC which rose on the back of Android, and fell from grace, because of successful *competition* from Samsung. For Samsung to cut Android (and its value) out of that equation its quite difficult. I suspect they will make a more serious push with Tizen.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#43316663)

They also have a great mail experience, and one of the best data-sync implementations around. Calendars scheduling and sharing is pretty well done too. Google-drive is very nice, and probably under-used by most for what it's capable of. Reader was nice ... I'm going to miss that. I rarely use Google maps myself, and MS has a decent mapping capability, although I haven't tried it on a phone. I think It'd be pretty easy to go Google-free on a smart phone if you have only a single device, but if you have multiple I think I'd find it quite hard to get the same level of seamless integration between phone, tablet, and desktop. With 'Google-Now' doing some interesting things by combining your data it's even more integrated. A little creepy, but pretty cool.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about a year ago | (#43316923)

Facebook is at a disadvantage because it does not have a mobile profile.

Facebook is at a disadvantage because it doesn't have a foundry or any hardware fab facilities. For facebook to have a facebook branded phone they need to go to companies that make android phones and ask them to make one with a facebook logo on it.

One of the things that has happened is that western design firms who were outsourcing production to Asia suddenly got cut out of the process when those companies decided to make their own damn phone. Facebook would be trying to enter into that market in the absolutely worst possible place. At least nokia and RIM did some assembly in house, but that's of little value.

Re:Google should be concerned... (2)

s.petry (762400) | about a year ago | (#43316615)

There are not a billion humans on Facebook, sorry but that is absolutely wrong (though I don't doubt someone has posted that stat and that you believed it). There may be a billion accounts, but wholly shit man, use your head! A large portion of those accounts are people that quit using Facebook, but of course still count in the stats since their data is never deleted. A huge chunk of those accounts are businesses, not people. Some people may have 4-5 businesses so 4-5 facebook accounts (think Authors, Artists, Musicians). A huge percentage of those accounts are spam/bot accounts. And the largest percentage of real humans are not really users. They may log in once a month to read family updates, but that's not regular enough to be a user on any other system so should not be considered such on Facebook.

The real number of people actively using Facebook across the world is probably closer 100-150 million or so.

If you doubt my math, remember that the highest populated countries (China and India) have the largest populations living in poverty with no access to the Internet at all. It's maybe 1 in 100 people in China and India that have regular Internet access. Those other 99 out of a hundred would not have time to surf on the public computers, if they did they would starve. Now add in most of Africa, which has very smaller percentages of the population with Internet access. Some large portions of the Middle East also have no internet access.

If your number was correct, that would mean that 1 in 7 people in the world are Facebook users. Stop and think about how unrealistic that number is for a minute.

Hell, my estimate considers that the US has 10% of the population using Facebook, which is extremely generous. Out of my family (100 or so people) I can think of 3 people that are Facebook users. Only 20 or so have a Facebook account at all, many of which were created by the 3 regular users. It's not like my family is all out scratching dirt for a living, they just have no interest in surfing the Internet at all, let alone using Facebook.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year ago | (#43316735)

citation needed. x10 or so.

Seriously. I've been to both countries, and I think you're making shit up.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

psiclops (1011105) | about a year ago | (#43317109)

China's Internet Users Cross 500 Million (article from January 2012) [pcworld.in]

At the end of December, the country had 513 million Internet users...This puts the country's total Internet penetration at 38.3 percent...Analysts, however, have said the statistics provided by the CNNIC are inflated. The CNNIC defines users as people, ages 6 and above, who have connected to the Internet in the past six months.

so it's probably above 10%. but also probably lower than you would have expected.

Seriously. I've been to both countries, and I think you're making shit up.

i'm guessing you've been to some areas of both countries and thus witnessed what life is like for a small percentage of their total populations.
hell even in my own country my experience would tell me there are a lot more internet users than there actually are - that's because i experience a very small subsection of what life is like in my country.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

jez9999 (618189) | about a year ago | (#43317571)

but wholly shit man

LOL

Human beings? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316649)

" Remember, we're addressing over a billion human beings at Facebook."

http://www.socialbakers.com/facebook-statistics/united-states

I think that's unlikely, Facebooks users represent 71% of US internet users... which is basically impossible, more likely 20% accounts, 20% fake accounts, 20% dead accounts, 11% robots.

Similar problem with their UK numbers, they claim 29 million active users... out of 43 million UK Internet users. Unlikely.

I'm kind of suspicious of FB, their numbers don't add up and they keep getting caught and admitting a little bit of their scams.

e.g. The 'likes' problem, BBC has researched quite a few of these games. e.g. their virtual bagel company seemed to be getting fake likes from the advert despite doing nothing at all, and being a fake company:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-18870170

Or the US researcher who spotted they were incrementing likes for comments:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19832043

Why would they need to do that if they have 71% of Internet users???? Dodgy.

So they'll come out with a phone that does Facebook (that would be all phones now), with Microsoft services (Bing etc.) yet that's what the Nokia phone is and its not selling, so why would FB's? I'm sure the phones Facebook page will get a lot of likes mind you!

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

MacGyver2210 (1053110) | about a year ago | (#43316697)

I think you're confusing a billion pages and 'users' with a billion actual people. There is nowhere near a billion people using Facebook. I would wager that there is maybe half a billion actual, real people who use it. The rest are interest pages and duplicate accounts. I know several people who have multiple accounts of their own, and a few who actually have dozens to spam likes and comment blasts for fun and profit.

Google would not benefit from the use of Android in this phone. Likewise, they won't lose if they decide NOT to use Android as a base. Hell, if they decide to go with Microsoft, when(not if) Microsoft screws something up completely and their products have some huge fiasco that drives people away, Google-based handsets are perfectly in line to greet the exodus.

Re:Google should be concerned... (1)

oztiks (921504) | about a year ago | (#43317249)

I wouldn't be too worried if I were Google.

The only reason why Facebook needs this because it has no real mobile monetization plan in place. What this is supposed to do is bring mobile share across to Facebook so they can sell ad space, however, the struggles are numerous and to just touch on a few we only have to look at what other companies have had to fair over the past 5 years.

So consider this how much money are they going to spend in tandem with the likelihood that a dwindling Chinese manufacturer such as HTC is even going to make a dent in to the likes of Apple and Samsung?

Rather than say "oh Google should be scared" how about HTF (How the fuck) is HTC and FB going to fair the smartphone shit fight?

I'd say it's a fly by nighter, once off, grab an expiring marketshare that wont lead anyway into the future, Like i've always said, FB should of made a camera not a phone.

Dupe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316451)

About time (1)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year ago | (#43316501)

Aren't they a couple years late on this front?

Late to the Party, but brought beer (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43316713)

Aren't they a couple years late on this front?

Really they are doing this post IPO which is kind of why they did it, and their is still an awful lot of dumbphone to smartphone comparison, and Apples mark share is shrinking; Microsoft if failing to prove itself the third ecosystem(sic); No other serious competition [although lots of it]. The only thing they have missed out on, is I suspect they could have converted those feeing blackberry users faster than Apple or Google.

...but the market is wide open, especially for a Android compatible phone.

Facebook app (1)

mwn3d (2750695) | about a year ago | (#43316545)

And the facebook app still crashes all the time because facebook doesn't care about android people.

Facebook isn't everything... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316581)

This is Facebook showing its more egotistical side...

Everybody wants you in their Walled Garden/Prison (2)

knorthern knight (513660) | about a year ago | (#43316699)

They call it "ecosystem", but "Walled Garden" or "Prison" is a more apt term. They're not selling hardware; they're selling a gift-that-keeps-on-giving... to the seller. An Iphone (that isn't jailbroken) can only buy apps from Apple's approved store, with Apple getting its 30% cut. MS and Google and FB etc, etc want in on that scheme.

Re:Everybody wants you in their Walled Garden/Pris (4, Informative)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#43316715)

Google specifically doesn't do it, so I don't know why you're lumping them in the same basket. You can get applications from non-official sources straight off, no rooting or hacking involved. Alternative markets? Sure, there's plenty. Plain and simply download and install an app? Yep, that too. If there's one thing you can't accuse Google of, it's trying to make a walled garden. At worst, it's a slightly overgrown garden with the sign "beware of the leopard" on the unbarred exit.

Re:Everybody wants you in their Walled Garden/Pris (3, Informative)

flimflammer (956759) | about a year ago | (#43317335)

Google's "garden" isn't exactly "walled". It's more like a chest-high hedge with broad openings on every side. You know, what with being able to install software not explicitly approved by Google or listed in their marketplace and all -- a system that we should hope makes a comeback in other places.

Re:Everybody wants you in their Walled Garden/Pris (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43317935)

Interesting that you can install nearly anything you want, with the exception of OS updates.

The last step (2)

RubberDogBone (851604) | about a year ago | (#43316705)

FB has to try this because the media says they do, and thus, so do their investors. And when it flops, because it will, this will be the final step in FB's rise to prominence and the first media -identified step on their path to being the next Myspace.

Besides... HTC? Really? That's like betting your future on a brand that may cease to exist any moment. What is FB thinking? Maybe they can blame any flop on the poor choice of partner.

Re:The last step (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43316865)

the difference being.. facebook's fall will hurt many individual shareholders and investment funds... while when myspace tanked, it was only news corp that suffered the big financial hit (hahaha rupert, you old fucktard).... although seeing that little shit zuckerberg lose a billion or two would be worth losing a few bucks of my own.

Re:The last step (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year ago | (#43316995)

its probably real cheap n easy to talk HTC into doing something that has a glimmer of hope

Facebook - the worst big offender with privacy (2)

Master Of Ninja (521917) | about a year ago | (#43317005)

While I think a lot of people would want this and buy this (the facebook addicts who are constantly posting that is), Facebookstrikes me as the web company with the worst outlook to privacy out of the lot. They seem to change their T&Cs to suit them and only apologise when they are caught in something nefarious.

The problem is that (I cannot see) a useful alternative. Facebook and Google have integrated themselves so into the general internet that even Slashdot seems to have Google and Facebook login options. Google seems to be slightly better with regards to privacy, but their recent actions have made me actually switch from Chrome back to Firefox. I've even started investigating moving some of my 'services' to smaller brands, running services on my Synology NAS, or even thinking of hosting my own virtual server for privacy.

I even found an extension called Ghostery [ghostery.com] which disables advert tracking in Firefox and it is quite astounding how much tracking gets done on the internet. Whilst I appreciate you can't get something for nothing, we (as a society) seem to now throw our privacy more and more out the window without realising the implications. Facebook's alledged phone is just another nail in the coffin of our privacy.

Re:Facebook - the worst big offender with privacy (1)

bmalia (583394) | about a year ago | (#43319283)

I have gone the opposite direction. I put everything in the google cloud now, and just purchased a chromebook to get easy access to it.

What is wrong with people? (1)

DrGeorge995 (2659661) | about a year ago | (#43317019)

Everyday these kind of news get more and more hilarious.Soon the owner of the coffee shop accross the street will make his own smartphone brand.(Because an app was too mainstream)

Except their is only a few players (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#43317073)

Everyday these kind of news get more and more hilarious.Soon the owner of the coffee shop accross the street will make his own smartphone brand.(Because an app was too mainstream)

Except a Facebook phone was inevitable; Of the "Pack of four" only Amazon is yet to release a kindle phone that is a done deal, Microsoft don't have a surface phone yet, and that is inevitable [once there is only patents to pick from Nokias Carcass]. Other than that its the same electronics companies that have been around for years. There are a few competing Linux based OS's but those are going to be whittled down very quickly.

Re:Except their is only a few players (1)

koan (80826) | about a year ago | (#43317397)

"There are a few competing Linux based OS's but those are going to be whittled down very quickly."

Like android?

Yeah why not? (2)

koan (80826) | about a year ago | (#43317393)

If you're on Facebook they already have facial data, retina data, associations, extremely accurate psych profile and now you can let them track and store your position with a phone and get a voice sample too.
Maybe they will include a free fingerprint scanner app in the for "security".

Bonus for Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43317905)

Why would Facebook want to "give" it's data mining to Google?

Enough with it. (1)

Fuzzums (250400) | about a year ago | (#43318431)

Personally I'm really fed up with the way my android behaves. Compared with Windows and a pre installed IE, that phone is a nightmare. I wouldn't know where to begin the list of pre installed SHIT that you can't remove.
Also. What would you do with your computer if suddenly after an update, your whole system behaves differently.
On, when YOU want to install an other OS, then ok. But this feels like some ass telling me I need a different OS and pushes it down my throat.

So: No thanks.

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