The key detail in the Bloomberg story are the names of all the Apple engineers and designers Facebook has hired in its effort to design its own phone. (The New York Times had reported that Facebook had hired some ex-Apple engineers, but didn’t name them.)
Here they are:
Greg Novick, who helped develop the touch-screen user interface; Tim Omernick and Chris Tremblay, who also worked on the device’s software; and Scott Goodson, who helped create the stock-market application, according to people with knowledge of the hires.
Last year, Facebook also bought Push Pop Press, a digital publishing software maker co-founded by Apple alumni Mike Matas and Kimon Tsinteris, two designers who helped build the look and feel of the iPhone and iPad software. Matas is credited with creating the battery logo that shows on the iPhone screen when it’s charging.
Facebook also hired Apple design manager Chris Weeldreyer last month, though it’s not clear if he’s working specifically on mobile products.
One way Facebook could add a lot of mobile talent all at once: buying Web browser maker Opera.
Here’s the statement Facebook always issues whenever it’s asked if it’s making a phone, which is fun to parse for its complete and utter lack of a denial:
Our mobile strategy is simple: We think every mobile device is better if it is deeply social. We’re working across the entire mobile industry; with operators, hardware manufacturers, OS providers, and application developers to bring powerful social experiences to more people around the world.
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