Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

Summary: Your Facebook phone may be the equivalent of having a KGB agent tailing you. Mark Zuckerberg will be in your pocket. You might as well wear one of those ankle bracelets for tracking.

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The Facebook phone is in play---again---and it appears we have another 12 to 18 months to go before mobile and social utopia arrives. I can't wait to see the privacy flaps that emerge from this adventure.

AllThingsD is reporting that Facebook has named HTC to build a phone with the social network at the core. The code name is Buffy because it will allegedly slay the market---or something like that. Sound familiar? The Facebook phone has been rumored forever. TechCrunch reported that Facebook was working to build a phone a year ago. CNET News also reported that Facebook was reaching out to hardware makers.

In other words, Facebook will have been plotting a smartphone for about two years before hitting the market. Facebook's approach will be akin to Amazon's plan with the Kindle Fire. Build on top of Android, hide the OS and integrate services. By the way, Amazon is reportedly planning a phone too. No one---Microsoft, RIM, Amazon, Facebook and wireless carriers---really wants the mobile world being run by just Apple and Google.

We all know how important social is to mobile and the two categories go together nicely. But do you really want a Facebook phone? If you think the social graph can be overdone today just wait until Facebook starts broadcasting every move to your friends. Every purchase you make. Every app you use. Every time you happen to hit the john with your smartphone in tow your friends will know. I could be exaggerating, but not by much (and you know half of you bring your smartphone to the loo).

Also: Facebook's oversharing flap: Much ado for tech news junkies only? | CNET: How Facebook is ruining sharing

A Facebook phone will be oversharing to go. Your Facebook phone may be the equivalent of having a KGB agent tailing you. Mark Zuckerberg will be in your pocket. You might as well wear one of those ankle bracelets for tracking.

Oh sure, you can turn off the Facebook features embedded in this social phone---assuming you can find the privacy settings. You could also log off from Facebook---but this social phone may just brick on you.

Yes folks, the Facebook phone will be a godsend for a few of you. I anxiously await more details in the year ahead.

Related:

Facebook taps HTC to build Android-powered Facebook phone (rumor)

Topics: Mobility, Telcos, Social Enterprise

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56 comments
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  • Not a fan of "Smart"phones

    First off, if these "Smart"-phones were truly so smart, they wouldn't be so hard for the average person to learn how to use. That's how people get tricked into being tracked; make it SOOOOO complicated to set up that you end up turning on the location-based everything anyway due to lack of patience.

    I'm an experience techie. I have my own Ubuntu-based KDE system at home that I configured myself to be as secure as I can get it. I also loaded DD-WRT on my router; and I set up my own home studio & home theater. That being said, you know what phone I use? A good old flip or slider. Why? Easy enough to set up that I know EXACTLY what's going on.

    I'm already accustomed to the fact that the PATRIOT Act allows the government to tap our phone conversations without prior consent or a search warrant. I can't do anything about that other than go to Congress. But as far as technology goes, I have DOZENS of options. I could go for a "smart"-phone, but why? to have my battery die every 6 hours (due to the 1 amp battery versus the netbook's 3 amp battery), or 3 hours if I choose to go on Facebook or whatever?

    My other gripe about Androids and Windows Mobile: apps such as Facebook, Tagged, Yahoo Messenger, etc. INTEGRATE into the messaging. That's a security issue to me; my online contacts don't need to know everything I'm doing.
    ryeckley82
    • Standard flip phones get tracked too

      There's GPS on your old-school flip phone as well and there's no way of turning it off. I called Verizon and they say by law they have to leave it turned on, which is_bullsh!t.
      ScorpioBlue
      • yep

        @ScorpioBlue amaxes me how people can't see what's right in front of their nose. Goobermint mandated the ability to track 24/7 and listen in on your conversations... even if the phone is "off."

        "Off" on any mobile phone only means "off to you," the user. It's still doing the security state's business.

        With all this prying and tracking crap they always tell you up front what they are going to be doing. Either people just don't bother to look into the technology in their hands, or they can't fathom the consequences. eg any cell phone can triangulate your position within a few feet...

        Would anybody ever use such information for ill purpose? naaaaa, government never does anything wrong. 8\
        pgit
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @ScorpioBlue / @yep

        It does the heart good to see mroe and more persons admitting to whats going on with our government. For years those of us who have tried to point out this info would typically be called conmspiracy theorists or "chubacabra chasers".

        This ability to track users was put in the telecommunications act many years ago (late 90s or earl 00's, can't remeber when exactly) but it got little publicity and thats just the way government wanted it.

        At least some in the media are finally admitting to whats going on. Now we just need to get them to stop spinning it as being something good or just not that bad.
        BlueCollarCritic
      • Isn't even needed.

        @ScorpioBlue

        They just need to go "The Net" on you, & triangulate the signal from your cellphone between 2 separate cell towers. It's no different than regular, old-school DF (Direction Finding) that was done by the military...you know, back in Vietnam, Korea, WWII. Is it as accurate as GPS, no; but it'll put you within the neighborhood (maybe 100 yards, or a football field, from your actual position).
        spdragoo
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82
      First and foremost
      "First off, if these "Smart"-phones were truly so smart, they wouldn't be so hard for the average person to learn how to use"
      I believe the problems are not the phone's complexity but users who are as thick as Asphalt cement milkshakes left in the sun.

      Why yes i would like to clarify that statement if you are complaining about a phone's complexity you are to blame because of:
      1) You should have researched the friendliness of a particular device (e.g. Android is for mad i like to customize every square micrometer of my os which is incidentally what i have :P and if that dos not suit you as i discovered than it is your fault for not looking it up) belove me the internet is a wonderful place.

      2) You did not take the time to go over the user manual ask questions in the forums or generally make any effort what so ever to gather additional knowledge you assume that when you buy a smart phone it will sync its functions whit your brain

      Second i would like to add that if you believe that in this day and age online privacy exists then please let me know how you found a way to live on mars
      If you want privacy don't post on facebook " hey my home address xx,retard street, hell or photos of your mom, you or anyone of your family for that matter! if your "privacy" is compromised then it is your fault.

      I accept that fact that is why i draw a line between what i will transmit online and what i will talk privately to people about
      Unrealmaster287
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82 First you say that smartphones are complicated and then you claim to be an experienced techie... Really? Okay you want an easy to use, easy to set up smartphone then get an iPhone. If you want something you can customize then get an Android based smartphone. And I know plenty of "average" people - non techies - who use iPhones and Android based smartphones daily and do not have any issues with them.

      BTW that slider, flip phone, candybar, whatever feature phone you have also has GPS that cannot be turned off...
      athynz
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82 First you say that smartphones are complicated and then you claim to be an experienced techie... Really? Okay you want an easy to use, easy to set up smartphone then get an iPhone. If you want something you can customize then get an Android based smartphone. And I know plenty of "average" people - non techies - who use iPhones and Android based smartphones daily and do not have any issues with them.

      BTW that slider, flip phone, candybar, whatever feature phone you have also has GPS that cannot be turned off...
      athynz
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82
      Agree. I'm all about researching and purchasing new technologies but when it comes to phones web, text, and calls is all that most of us need. There are so many people paying big bucks and high data plans just to go on facebook and twitter. I think these smart phones are more of a fashion statement than needs. And yes, the Homeland Security can locate and listen in to conversations you have even if the phone's off. They have teamed up with all carrier providers in multiple ways to catch criminals.
      Anti Fanboy
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @Anti Fanboy
        So what, can't you live with another persons' opinion? People wearing expensive perfume while they could easily buy a deodorant are also making a fashion statement. I think there aren't much items left that you "really" need.

        You say you're all about purchasing new technologies, then what do you buy? A new computer where you can play the latest games on (would you 'need' that?), shoes with lights that blink to the beat of your car stereo? the latest military helicopter? a particle accelerator?
        belli_bettens
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82

      Every day you use your cell phone your kissing your rights goodbye! Corporations and Gov want to know everything about you and they'll bend the laws and your rights to achieve their goal of a database they can use to track each and everything you do. Your freedom went up in a puff of smoke the minute you pushed the power button!

      As for the Facebook phone...NO THANKS! I'm not a big fan of where High-Tech is going these days. I like consumers having control of the device they PAY for! I don't need a corporation telling me how and what do do with my device. The PC industry has it right. You buy the computer, you own it, choose what to run, what to disable etc...but the Cell Carriers and phone manufacturers have too much control over the device.
      Rob.sharp
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @rob.sharp@...
        If you really want privacy, buy one of these pre-paid Trac-phones for cash. a high-tech spy will know where the phone is, but they are not able to associate it with you until they ask one of your friends who it was that called them from this particular phone number at a particular time. If your friend also has one of these anonymous phones, the tracking problem becomes almost impossible to solve. Because of this, some countries have outlawed the purchase of such a phone without the registration of the personal identification of the purchaser.
        arminw
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @rob.sharp@... yes, but i would like to point out that this is more of a problem in the USA than in many other nations (not focussing on the security bit, but the difference between phones and PC's) other countries allow you to mix and match phone services with hardware in a way that you stay in control. The US system has somehow ended up far too much in the control of the carriers. But I agree, a phone (cellphone or smartphone or whatever, should be just that, a piece of hardware, your piece of hardware when you buy it. from there you shuld chose what you run on it, and what services you use it with... it sounds so simple and obvious, and yet...
        one.m.davis
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82 Strange, I found my iPhone easy to use and configure. If you can configure Linux, you can certainly figure out an iPhone, which is far simpler.

      And yeah, Facebook is one of those apps where I have tracking turned off.

      . . . and my iPhone lasts far longer than 6 hours normally. Just don't abuse it with power-sucking things like high end games and videos.
      CobraA1
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @ryeckley82 What is wrong with your brain?
      thefatalepic
  • Long live big android

    The Goog has pictures of your house, robot cars to follow you around, spy-in-the-sky satellites that can resolve a dog in your back yard, and you're worried that Zuckerberg's phone will track you?
    Robert Hahn
    • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

      @Robert Hahn <br>Robot cars that follow me around? Huh. Any organization with a satellite will have a picture of my house. If you are afraid of satellites, you quite literally need to live in a cave. Consider than for nearly a billion people (and growing), Facebook probably has many pictures of you house, your car, your friends etc. They know who you talk to, what you talk about and what websites you visit (regardless of whether you were logged into facebook at the time). Not only that, they are known to sell this information to 3rd parties. I think I have a few concerns about Facebook that go a bit beyond them having a satellite view of my house.
      anono
      • And Google &quot;shares&quot; (sells) your info with third parties

        @anono
        so they know everything, even down to your credit card numbers and buying habits, whether you tell anybody or not on Facebook.
        William Farrell
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @anono <br> <a href="http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/search-cant-scale-without-social-and-why-bing-could-still-win/63468" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/search-cant-scale-without-social-and-why-bing-could-still-win/63468</a><br><br>Quote from article " if you do a search on Bing and youre logged into Facebook in the same browser then the search results will show which of your friends have liked a certain page."<br><br>Clear evidence that Facebook has no problem selling Microsoft your data and Microsoft has no problem buying your data. Also look at jdakula's comment for more info on Facebook tracking. Not to mention the fact that I've seen people go to sites while on logged on to Facebook and they sometimes see pictures of their friends on the site itself. Care to offer any proof of your claims.
        anono
      • RE: Facebook's phone: Oversharing to go

        @anono
        lets not forget that they scan forums to attach ideologies to your personality profile. ;-)
        CaptOska