Facebook may be working on its own OS to reduce dependency on Android: Report

By Xite - December 20, 2019
Facebook is reportedly working on its own operating system that would power its virtual reality headset Oculus and future augmented reality headset. Facebook apps will remain available on Android.

Facebook may be working on its own operating system for its VR headset Oculus or its future augmented reality glasses, a media report has said. The move is said to be taken by keeping in mind an aim to reduce dependency on Google’s Android OS -- a modified version of which currently powers both the above mentioned devices. As per news platform The Information, Mark Lucovsky, who helped co-author Microsoft’s Windows NT, has been tasked to build an OS from scratch. 

However, the apps owned by the Menlo Park-based company, i.e., Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and others will remain available on Android. ‘We really want to make sure the next generation has space for us. We don’t think we can trust the marketplace or competitors to ensure that’s the case. And so we’re gonna do it ourselves,’ Facebook’s Vice President of Hardware, Andrew ‘Boz’ Bosworth, was quoted as saying.

Facebook is expected to have a lot of freedom by having an indigenously-developed OS. Firstly, it will be able to modify all the necessary elements to give way for a better social interaction -- and may be privacy — in the devices that the OS will power. Secondly, it could remove all the difference of opinions that companies have to face when they tie-up with partners. In this case, Facebook and Google won’t be in disagreement in deciding the working of hardware.

The details about this are still scarce but already there were reports that Facebook was building its own AI-powered virtual assistant that would compete with the likes of Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple’s Siri. Reportedly, Facebook approached Microsoft to license data from its search engine Bing and train the assistant. 

The news comes as Facebook is in the middle of investigations related to its use of the users data from Facebook and Instagram. The company has been pulled up for various data leaks and allegedly deceitful data privacy policies. With so much mistrust, people may have a hard time to subscribe to Facebook’s idea of its own OS-powered hardware.

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