Facebook Toying with the Idea of Releasing a Branded Smartphone

Paul Lilly

This just in, Cookie Monster has left Sesame Street for Wall Street and purchased a majority share in Facebook. This would explain why the world's largest social networking site seemingly has its hand in every cookie jar it can find, including photography (Instagram buyout), Web browsing (possible Opera Software acquisition), and perhaps even smartphones, as Facebook reportedly mulls building its own branded handset. When asked to comment on Facebook's insatiable sweet tooth for side ventures, the majority shareholder responded, "Me like cookies!"

If this venture comes to fruition, we'll find out if Facebook's decision makers also like Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) or Jelly Bean (Android 5.0) and goes with Google's open source OS, or if it taps another mobile platform. Regardless, a report in The New York Times cites "employees of Facebook and several engineers who have been sought out by recruiters there" as saying Mark Zuckerberg Cooke Monster and company hope to launch a branded smartphone in 2013.

You might be surprised to learn that this isn't Facebook's first time flirting with a smartphone. It's actually the third, one of the recruiters briefed on the plans told NYT . Past efforts were scrapped after determining it was too difficult of a task launching a smartphone, but with devices being so ubiquitous these days, and a $16 billion purse to play with as a result of Facebook's recent IPO, the timing might finally be right.

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