Microsoft Responds to Facebook's Android OS Overlay Announcement
Published on: 6th Apr 2013
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
By: Ian Mansfield
Following on from the launch of Facebook's new software overlay for Android smartphones a Microsoft exec wrote that he felt that the presentation was remarkably similar to the Windows Phone announcement back in 2011.
Microsoft's Corporate Vice President of Corporate Communications, Frank X. Shaw wrote on the company blog that the Facebook service appears to share a lot of the thinking that went into its own Windows Phone OS.
The key differentiator between WP and Android/iPhone is the use of Live Tiles so that content can be displayed on the home page instead of a collection of icons.
Teasingly, he wrote that they can "understand why Facebook would want to find a way to bring similar functionality to a platform that is sadly lacking it."
That comment could be the most insightful as Microsoft could be looking at the Facebook Home service as a serious challenger to its own smartphone OS as it -- in their opinion -- is much closer to their own innovations in Live Tiles.
Would a customer offered a facsimile of the Live Tiles function on an Android phone then migrate to a Windows Phone based handset? Of course, the Microsoft OS also includes connectivity to Facebook as a Live Tile.
But he noted that in his opinion, the Android OS is "complicated enough without adding another skin built around another metaphor, on top of what is already a custom variant of the OS."
"So, while we applaud Facebook for working to give some Android owners a taste of what a "people-centric" phone can be like, we'd humbly like to suggest that you get the real thing, and simply upgrade to a Windows Phone." he added.
On the web: The Official Microsoft Blog