Analyst says Facebook should get in on the webOS game
It's a bid that would be unusual, to say the least, but an analyst from Jeffries & Co, Peter Misek, has come to the conclusion that HP should at least license out webOS to Facebook, if not sell the OS outright. With the company's recent push into creating the "Facebook Phone" using Android, gaining heavy integration with Skype for VoIP and video calling access with friends, and reinventing their Messaging to bring all of your conversations with all of your connections to one place (similar to how webOS Synergy brings your IM chats and SMS together), Misek says that Facebook might stand the most to gain from an OS purchase, with webOS being at the top of that list.
The reasons why Facebook should consider this, if any company would, is all centered around the cloud capabilities and integration with webOS devices. Facebook could use a modified webOS Synergy to make getting onto the social giant's network so much easier (and nicer) than even the HTC Status currently allows, and webOS still has a lot of room for growth. Google+ will soon be perfectly integrated with every single Android device out there on the market. Meanwhile, what does Facebook have to continue their growth in that area?
In some ways, webOS has never really defined itself; Is it a gaming platform? The best OS for business users? A Social Networking mega-OS? The most developer-friendly ecosystem? It has a good grasp of all of these concepts, but none of them have really struck as the main selling point of webOS, and that has been a problem since early 2009 (you can't sell the concept of "multitasking", as we've seen). Facebook, on the other hand, could possibly give it a single purpose that could be easily sold to the masses.
When talking about hardware, Facebook already has built a relationship with HTC and INQ Mobile, so there would be no problem actually getting the devices made if it came to that point. And in fact, HTC might be more interested in working with webOS on their devices after Google's recent purchase of Motorola Mobility. Plus, Misek believes that carriers want a third smartphone ecosystem to raise the bar of competition and sales (he apparently doesn't think that Windows Phone or RIMM have what it would take to be that third major OS).
With all of the pieces already firmly in place, it looks like Facebook could stand to gain a lot from using webOS to become more integrated with the every-day lives of their users as it happens, and not just the re-telling of stories later on when they sit down at a computer.
We aren't sure what we think of this idea yet, with all of the concerns lately about Facebook privacy and their constant battles with other companies it would be a tricky situation for many of our users who have vowed to never use Facebook again. But if there was one company that could stand to grow from pushing further into the mboile market, it is Facebook. Since that is also one of the only companies that could promote webOS to more than 750 Million users worldwide instantly, it might not be a bad option for HP to look into, either.
HP might not want to sell webOS to Facebook as Misek believes they should, but licensing? Now that could work. Normally we like to scoff at analysts with their conflicting reports about the mobile market, but somehow we hope that something happens with this concept. Because, you know, something definitely needs to happen, and soon.