Facebook has provided a way to make video calls through Skype inside a web browser on the Facebook website. Mark Zuckerberg said they prefer to let companies that specialize in something provide functionality to Facebook instead of Facebook creating a sub par experience. He also referred to the rest of 2011 as Facebook’s Launching season with other rumored products such as a native iPad app coming sometime this year. The other big rumor is project “Spartan” which we reported on earlier today which is some big HTML5 project most likely being a HTML5 version of Facebook vs an app.
TechCrunch has a good overview of Facebook’s new project Spartan and details about other features such as Skype integration along with more rumors about a native iPad app. Spartan is rumored to be the HTML 5 client that could also host apps, but it’s not really something many would find useful, Apps should be available when you need them not when you have a network connection. Though in Facebook’s defense they were not happy when people insinuated they would compete with Apple’s App Stores. It’s understandable that Mr Zuckerberg would want to stay on good terms with Jobs and probably is an avid Mac user like the rest of us if the shots of him using a Mac in the “Social Network” mean anything.
Nick Carlson over at Business Insider has a good post detailing some features that were going to be part of Facebook integration, but instead we are stuck with Twitter. It’s no secret that Facebook competes in some circles that Apple has products in. I doubt it’s enough at this time to cause any issues and Apple should be more interested in the 500 Million+ accounts that Facebook could put more iPhones in front of.
Over the last few weeks we have heard about 2 high-profile JailBreakers being hired by Apple and Facebook. It’s a common trend of tech companies to hire someone who’s taken their product and extended it even further usually legally. Antivirus companies have hired virus makers or security researchers, Software makers have hired people who build features that enhance their products. In the case of Apple they hired someone that added a feature that they were interested in. Facebook hired GeoHot probably because the kid is a coding genius, getting sued by Sony for cracking the uncrackable proves you know your stuff, and Facebook is known for hiring people who are good at what they do.
Peter Hajas and George Hotz though are now bound by contracts tied to their well-paying jobs. These are two people who most likely may not be cracking anything anytime soon. So did these companies hire people to stop the Jailbreaking, or at least in the case of Facebook maybe that’s what they wanted, someone who can help reverse engineer Apple products. Peter on the other hand is one less Jailbreaker that Apple necessarily has to worry about. It all depends to those two on how much they value working at two of the best tech companies out there to be working for.
Don Reisinger over at Cnet offers a detailed look into why Facebook has been given the cold shoulder in iOS 5 while Twitter has seen much love from Apple. A few things he points are that the companies are just too different. Also maybe Apple knows that people have Facebook overload and would not appreciate it sticking its face in your face from every app. Whatever the difference is, Apple has turned it’s back on one of the largest user bases in history of social networks.