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Facebook Phone, the Facebook Confidential Project [Update 1x]

This is really big, according to TechCrunch, Facebook is said to be building its own mobile phone  which will run its own operating system. Or precisely, Facebook is building the software for the phone, and working with third party to build the hardware.  It seems likely, Facebook is going to make full integration with contacts list and other core functions, as this integration can be implemented only if it controls the operating system.

According to the source, there is two high level Facebook employees –Joel Hewitt and Matthew Papakipos – work in high secrecy in this project. as both of them have deep operating system experience.

Hewitt helped create the Firefox browser and was working on Parakey before it was acquired by Facebook in 2007. Parakey, which never launched, was described as a “Web-based operating system.” Hewitt also created all of Facebook’s iPhone web apps and then native apps, but finally quit building for the iPhone in disgust late last year. But he knows operating systems and he knows mobile.

Papakipos also has a perfect background for this project. He was leading the Google Chrome OS project until June. He then quit and went to Facebook. Papakipos is considered a rockstar developer, and there are any number of jobs he’d be able to do at Facebook.

We would speculate that Facebook phone will be sold with  low prices as Facebook aims to get into as many hans as possible. Till now we don’t have any idea around its announcing date or even its look. but I would imagine that it will be a big milestone in the Facebook history. What do you think?

Update 1: Facebook spokesman has just confirmed to Mashable that Facebook is not building a mobile phone, here’s the full statement:

The story, which originated in Techcrunch, is not accurate. Facebook is not building a phone. Our approach has always been to make phones and apps more social. Current projects include include everything from an HTML5 version of the site to apps on major platforms to full Connect support with SDKs to deeper integrations with some manufacturers. Our view is that almost all experiences would be better if they were social, so integrating deeply into existing platforms and operating systems is a good way to enable this. For an example, check out Connect for iPhone and the integration we have with contact syncing through our iPhone app. Another example is the INQ1 phone with Facebook integration (the first so-called ‘Facebook Phone’). The people mentioned in the story are working on these projects. The bottom line is that whenever we work on a deep integration, people want to call it a ‘Facebook Phone’ because that’s such an attractive soundbite, but building phones is just not what we do.

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