But the company has collaborated with London-based manufacturer INQ to create a sort of unofficial Facebook phone -- or at least, that's how it's being sold. The Android-based phones (using Froyo) are the Cloud Touch and Cloud Q. They feature a fully live Facebook experience built around INQ's Visual Media Feed.
Facebook has evolved from a social network to become an incredibly powerful global communications platform. Speed and simplicity of access to things you love is our DNA, so our next step is to make it even easier for people to experience the richness of Facebook -- all from the home screen, said Frank Meehan, INQ chief executive, in a statement.
Facebook collaborated with INQ on the phone. Instead of the traditional text-based updates from Facebook apps on other smartphones, INQ says the Facebook experience is a rich media feed to the home screen. This includes a visual Facebook feed for clicking through friends' updates, pictures, videos and web pages.
There are also one-touch links to Facebook chat, friends, messages, wall and notifications. It even features Facebook single sign-on, meaning people can check into shops, restaurants and clubs with Facebook Places.
The INQ Cloud Touch and INQ Cloud Q bring Facebook to people with a single touch while they are mobile and demonstrate the power of socially aware devices. INQ has built an innovative and easy to use set of features that enable people to use common Facebook interactions such as viewing photos and videos, chat, message, and check-in to their favorite businesses all from the home screen, said Henri Moissinac, head of mobile business for Facebook, in a statement.
While INQ seems to be promoting the Cloud Touch and Cloud Q as Facebook phones, there is also a service for the European streaming music provider Spotify on it as well. Meehan said it is easier for Spotify customers to access their music with the new phones.
The Cloud Touch has a 3.5 inch HGVA display and is a touch device with a Qualcomm 7227 chipset. It has 4MB of storage with the option to add more and a 5 MP autofocus camera. The Cloud Q is 2.6 inches and has a QWERTY keyboard.
Thus far, the phones are only available in the U.K. INQ did not announce a release date and did not respond to inquiry for comment, but is expected to show off the phone at next week's Mobile World Congress.
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