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It feels like it was just yesterday, Facebook was the only word on the tip of everyone’s tongue. Is it just me or does it seem that Facebook is little played-out? There is no denying that Facebook is on top of the social media and internet stratosphere (2nd most frequented website domestically and globally) and cannot be touched. However, its invincibility is not without staleness. There are a plethora of companies that become “Americana” but never regain their hip and trend-setting origins (i.e. Levi, MySpace, etc.). I say company because many of us under-thirty types forget that a trendy website is ultimately in the business to make a profit, not to change the world (even though it may happen organically). So when news broke about Facebook attempting a mobile device of its own branding shortly after their stock fell again, it made me wonder, is Facebook in trouble now or just expanding a little late?
Early specs of an HTC/AT&T joint venture were displayed by Unwired View and it has everything you need to feel like you are in the “know”. The HTC Myst, as the spec names the device, has 1GB RAM, 16GB Storage (no microSD), front (1.6MP) and rear (5MP) cameras, and the Android Jelly to the Bean 4.1.2. OS. Preinstalled proprietary Facebook apps will ultimately make their way on the device but the question of “why is this device happening” still lingers with me.
Google already has a device (Nexus series) and an OS (Android) along with an abundance of patents and interest in other industries. Why did I mention Google? They happen to be the most visited website domestically and worldwide. Google doesn’t exist to do anything in social media and since its inception, has wanted to have a place in every other industry with its intense focus on mobile technology. So why is Facebook hell-bent on entering the smartphone war? Facebook should refocus and continue to improve their once niche platform. It has lost its sense of “cool” to twitter and tumblr and to then lean on past reverence seems like desperation. Google and other technical companies can venture into other revenue streams more easily because it has been their plan from the start. Facebook monetized by serving advertisements and there went its lineage of being indie or unique. I would be surprised if twitter or tumblr had future plans to release their own mobile devices. With a decreasing stock and popularity that it heading the same direction, Facebook should probably get its “cool” factor back before it runs out of good will from their faithful users and fix its mobile site rather than making mobile devices.