THE SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook has chosen HTC to build its first smartphone, codenamed Buffy.
Facebook picked the phone maker it wants to use for its device, selecting HTC over Samsung, according to All Things D. The Buffy will run a heavily modified version of Google's Android operating system, which Facebook chose for its openness.
A spokesman for Facebook said, "Our mobile strategy is simple: We think every mobile device is better if it is deeply social. We're working across the entire mobile industry; with operators, hardware manufacturers, OS providers, and application developers to bring powerful social experiences to more people around the world."
Facebook will launch the smartphone next year at the earliest, seeing as the vendor has only just been chosen. Whether HTC will create a brand new handset or modify an existing one remains to be seen.
HTC has already launched devices called the Chacha and Salsa that are among the closest devices to a Facebook phone with their dedicated Facebook buttons. The Taiwanese smartphone maker is one of the best when it comes to Android modification with its Sense overlay, so the choice might be a wise one by Facebook.
Facebook is available on almost every mobile phone either via the web browser or as an app, so the customised Facebook version of Android will have to be somewhat dramatic to make it stand out from the rest. µ
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