Former Apple Engineers Hired for “Facebook Phone”?

Talk was rife of Facebook developing a “Facebook Phone” some months back, found in various forum sites and electronic media watchguards, telling about Facebook’s intention in going beyond the online social network arena.

Back then, rumors of HTC being pegged to develop the phone (code named “Buffy”) was the hottest bit of gossip revolving around a “Facebook Phone”, with the item heralded to be available within the third quarter of 2012.

Recently, a new rumor hailing from the New York Times tells of Facebook hiring “more than half a dozen former Apple hardware and software engineers who worked on the iPhone” in developing another Facebook-branded mobile.

It is said that this new rumor is the third of its kind, with the New York Times report revealing that previous attempts proved to be too difficult for its proponents. The report also notes that Facebook, by hiring former Apple engineers, acknowledges the value of having experienced developers in the making of a quality mobile.

The Times report shares that: “One engineer who formerly worked at Apple and worked on the iPhone said he had met with [Zuckerberg], who then peppered him with questions about the inner workings of smartphones.”

With Google’s recent acquisition of Motorola Mobility, the idea of an online entity “buying into” the hardware development arena is not as far fetched as one would imagine.

Given Facebook’s recent IPO, which reportedly raised $16 billion, the social network giant has gathered enough to do what Google recently did, though one question remains crucial if a Facebook Phone actually does come to be: What added electronic consumer benefits would it arm users with, apart from those already available in today’s mobiles and portables?

There’s already a Facebook app, so what else would a Facebook phone do?

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