Official Facebook phone incoming: Just a novelty?

Facebook is going into partnership with HTC in order to produce an official Facebook phone; nicknamed Buffy, after the vampire slayer, it will run a modified version of the Android operating system.

According to sources close to AllThingsD the launch of the Facebook phone, after a long time in the rumour mill, will also use HTML 5 for apps, enabling it to run much of its present app offering as if it were native to the phone.

Great you might think, but this phone has actually been confirmed previously; as Pocket-lint reported earlier in the year, Facebook head of business development Dan Rose pretty much confirmed the existence of a new HTC handset by stating: "this is really just another example of a manufacturer who has taken our public APIs and integrated them into their device in an interesting way".

Before giving a part-denial by stating that Facebook wasn't involved with any branding of the phone, answering a firm "no" on the subject and saying: "the rumors around there being something more to this HTC device are overblown."

"Overblown", but not untrue.

The Facebook insider speaking to AllThingsD said: "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."

However, the advent of the official Facebook phone could end up being a bit of a novelty. At the time when apps were just a glint in Daddy Apple's eye this could have worked; deep integration with Facebook on a mobile device would have gone down a storm. Now the question needs to be asked: just how much integration do people want on Facebook without it being to the detriment of other functionality?

Well rounded devices can often do well in the market, over-complicated integration of one specific area can just make it more difficult to carry out other tasks - especially if you don't want Facebook knowing about them - buy one of these and you won't be able to sneeze without Facebook knowing about it.

Looking forward to the official HTC Facebook phone? Let us know in the comments.