Is Facebook about to buy Opera to create own Facebook browser?

A Facebook browser that would allow you keep up to date with your social life from in-built plug-ins and features on the menu bar could be on the cards. Pocket-lint has heard from one of its trusted sources that the social networking giant is looking to buy Opera Software, the company behind the Opera web browser.

According to our man in the know, the company could be about to expand into the browser space to take on the likes of Google, Apple, Microsoft, Mozilla and now even Yahoo, who has recently launched its own browser.

The move - which would no doubt send shivers of panic through Google - although unlikely to affect Chrome's continued growth in the short term, would see the two tech giants battle it out on your desktop and mobile for web surfing as well as social networking.

Opera already has a very good mobile browser, which has seen strong growth in the two years it has been available. And Facebook's buying the company would save it having to build a browser from scratch.

Since the Facebook IPO, which netted the company over $16 billion, Mark Zuckerberg's organisation has plenty of cash to expand. It has also left us in no doubt that it wants to get into the mobile sector more and more. Owning its own browser to market data from users regardless of whether or not they are actually on the Facebook website would be one such way of doing that. 

Opera claims to have around 200 million users across all of its platforms.

What do you think? Is a Facebook browser a natural step? Let us know in the comments below...



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