We knew it was only a matter of time before avid Facebook fans started looking (or hopelessly demanding) for an iOS version of the social networking site’s newest product, Facebook Home, and we initially thought it would never happen because Apple has the tendency to keep their operating system under tight control. However, things are looking up – Facebook and Apple are reportedly discussing the possibility of creating a version of the app suite that’s iOS-compatible.
According to Bloomberg, aside from Apple, the social networking company has also reached out to Microsoft about Facebook Home’s eventual expansion to other mobile operating systems. This may be good news for anyone still looking for a way to access Facebook Home, especially those who are not equipped with an Android device. This move also seems to be in line with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s initiative to prioritize mobile efforts. It all gets a little complicated when it comes to choosing teams for a product like Home: While Android’s open system makes it an attractive and honestly, far more possible option, iPhone compatibility definitely increases the legitimacy of a product. That, and Facebook already has a preexisting relationship with Apple … and Microsoft, for that matter. If Home turns out to be a home run (pardon the pun), it’s more likely these two companies will want to be part of the action. On the other hand, Apple’s tight grip on its ecosystem will undoubtedly mean Home functions a little differently.
To that end, Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s director of product, told Bloomberg that if Facebook were to recreate the Home software for Apple, it would be a lot different from the original version built for Android. “It may or may not be Home,” Mosseri said. “We could also just bring some of the design values to the iOS app. Or we could build just the lock screen.”
Facebook Home is essentially a “skin” that runs on top of your Android phone’s OS and gives you a beautiful and colorful representation of your Facebook desktop experience. Although nothing is absolutely set in stone between the three companies, the mere fact that Facebook intends for Facebook Home to become available across various platforms and break Android exclusivity says at least one obvious thing: You cannot escape Facebook.
Here’s what Zuckerberg actually said about why Facebook Home is appropriate for Android, during the company’s official announcement of the app suite:
“You don’t even need to modify the operating system really. Android was designed from the ground up to support these kind of deep integrations, and because of Google’s commitment to open this you can have experiences on Android that you can’t have on most other platforms,” Zuckerberg said. In an interview with Wired, Zuckerberg acknowledged his company’s good relationship with Apple, but admitted that the latter wants to own the whole experience themselves, which is something that goes against his open philosophy and desire to make Facebook available across all devices as soon as possible. “Android is growing quickly, and we’re excited that the platform is open and that it allows us to build these great experiences,” Zuckerberg said.
Like everyone else who owns one, Zuckerberg loves his iPhone and would love to be able to deliver Facebook Home through it in the future … maybe when Facebook hits the 3 to 5 billion user mark.