Rumors Swirl, Once Again, About Facebook Smartphone

Facebook is hoping the third time is the charm.

The social media giant is reportedly in planning stages to build a smartphone, which would be the third time the company has tried to develop a phone.

The New York Times reported that Facebook has hired former Apple engineers who helped build the iPhone to work on the project, which is code named “Buffy.”

On Friday, the company would not confirm or deny these reports, but “pointed to a previous statement it gave to AllThingsD last year that said in part, ‘We’re working across the entire mobile industry; with operators, hardware manufacturers, OS providers, and application developers.'”

Facebook has an operating system in place “complete with messaging, calendar, contacts and video, and an immense app store is on its way with thousands of highly popular apps,” along with Instagram, writes the Times.

If the project continues, the social networking site would be most likely competing less against Apple than against Google, which makes the Android system.

By 2016, annual sales of smartphones are predicted to hit 122 billion units, an indication of the increasing opportunities for companies to compete in the smartphone field.

Image courtesy of tj scenes/flickr

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