Is social networking giant Facebook planning to buy Norwegian browser maker Opera Software to create a Facebook-centric browser?
A tech site cited sources who said this could be the case—where the resulting product will allow a user to keep his or her social life up to date.
Pocket-lint.com said one of its trusted sources indicated the social networking giant is looking to buy Opera Software, the company behind the Opera web browser.
"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," it said.
Opera claims to have around 200 million users across all of its platforms, it noted.
It added this may allow Facebook to take on the likes of Google, Apple, Microsoft, Mozilla and even Yahoo, which recently launched its own Axis browser.
Pocket-lint.com said such a move may see Facebook and Google "battle it out on your desktop and mobile for web surfing as well as social networking."
It added Facebook has more than $16 billion from its recent initial public offering to expand - and 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," it said.
A separate article on Mashable said a custom browser would be "a significant step toward Facebook becoming your web, as opposed to just an Internet site you visit and service you use."
It added Opera’s mobile browser has received strong reviews online a possible sign that a functional Facebook browser using it could be even more powerful. — ELR