Here we go again.
Frank Shaw, Microsoft’s head of communications, took to the company blog today to “congratulate” Facebook on the launch of Facebook Home. Except that he’s not really congratulating Facebook, he’s passive-aggressively signaling the old “WE DID THIS FIRST!!!” whiny bullshit that Microsoft loves to pull from time to time.
Microsoft, by way of Shaw, seems annoyed that Facebook is getting all this buzz for something they believe they did in 2011 with Windows Phone. They’re pissed off that such a fact which seems so obvious to them wasn’t brought up enough yesterday, so they’re bringing it up themselves.
Not mentioned is that it wasn’t brought up because Windows Phone, while a good product in many regards, is a complete after-thought in the smartphone market. You can yell “FIRST!!!” as loudly as you want to try to change that, but that never works.
What’s deliciously awkward here is that Microsoft is actually an investor in Facebook, and a close partner. It must be especially maddening that Facebook would choose to utilize (or “spoon”) a product by their chief rival — hence Shaw’s comments about Android in his post.
I’ll just repeat what I said a year ago on a similar matter:
If you have to tell people you won, you lost.
I guess my point is that even though these people state things they’re *not* doing, they’re actively thinking about and/or working on them. That was the case with Apple, and it’s the case with Facebook.
That doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for Facebook to do a phone. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. Again, timing is everything. It just means it would be stupid for them not to be looking into it. Which they are — and have been, clearly.
Steve Jobs, 2003:
Mark Zuckerberg, 2012:
*No Facebook employee is actually on an assembly line building phone hardware.
1) The complete and utter lack of any link to or mention of TechCrunch even though we broke this story over a year ago.
Do they have new information? Yes, namely the codename, “Buffy”, and the partnership with HTC. But it is the same project, as they even acknowledge: “Although it has changed scope and leadership, Buffy has been an ongoing area of concern at the social networking giant for the past two years.”
2) While Facebook denied the project at the time of our report, there’s no question it has been real the entire time. I’m going to stick by what I wrote last September: Facebook Is Not Working On A Phone Just Like Google Was Not Working On A Phone.
In that post, I outlined exactly what these new reports suggest. Namely that Facebook has been working on their own version of Android with social deeply ingrained — which Dan Frommer was first to point out on Business Insider also over a year ago, and I reiterated hearing this past February. And working with a third-party to manufacturer the hardware (again, HTC).