There have been lots of rumors in the last couple of months suggesting Facebook will launch its own phone powered by Google's Android platform. However, until Facebook comes forward with an official announcement there's no telling whether or not they will go through with this project, so we should take the following with a grain of salt.
Mark Zuckerberg himself probably doesn't remember how many times he has denied the existence of such a gadget, saying "it doesn't make sense", and yet here we are once again dissecting the reliability of an FB phone rumor.
Regardless of that, a HTC insider @LlabTooFeR, source of many important leaks, recently published what appears to be the main specs of the Facebook Phone. Codenamed MYST_UL (also known as Opera_UL), the smartphone is said to come equipped with a 1 GHz dual-core Qualcomm MSM9830 Snapdragon S4 Play processor and 1GB of RAM. On the inside, the Facebook Phone will pack around 16GB of storage, but there is no info on the existence of a microSD card slot for memory expansion, so for now we must assume it will not come with one.
Furthermore, the device will sport a 5-megapixel rear photo snapper with autofocus, LED flash and video recording, as well as a secondary 1.6-megapixel front-facing camera for video calls. Last but not least, the Facebook Phone will feature a 4.3-inch capacitive touchscreen display with HD (720 x 1280 pixels) resolution. No word on Corning Gorilla Glass coating for the moment. Software-wise, the handset will ship with Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean operating system out of the box. Other highlights of the phone include Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP support, GPS with A-GPS support and Wi-Fi connectivity.
According to the latest hearsay, HTC MYST_UL is expected to hit shelves sometime in Q2 2013 in the United States. The smartphone will be available via AT&T, but there are no details on pricing options yet so stay tuned for more updates on the matter.
A "dedicated Facebook button" is thrown in there for good measure, but I'm still not convinced this phone exists. Call it the skepticism of a guy who's seen one too many UFO sighting reports, but there's something off here.
I'm not saying we should take Mark Zuckerberg's word for granted, but why would he be so aggressive in debunking all these rumors if he knows there's some truth to them? Then again, isn't this persistence the most solid proof that there is in fact something happening and Zuck doesn't want us to know about it early? Darn, now I've started believing in aliens, unicorns and vampires.