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CES Feature Articles

January 07, 2011

CES Gadgets in Love With Facebook

Investors and users aren't the only ones in love with Facebook (News - Alert), it appears.

Gadget makers increasingly are adding Facebook to their products, helping the social networking giant extend its reach beyond the Web and right into consumers' pockets, noted the Wall Street Journal today.

The proof is in the proliferation of new devices displayed at this week's Consumer Electronics Show (CES (News - Alert)) that include as a feature the ability to make direct links to Facebook. Products from cameras to video-game consoles that integrate Facebook into their core functions allow people to log in to their Facebook accounts directly from the gadgets, making it easier to bring in and send out information about themselves and their friends, as well as share their photos.

The popularity of the service with everyone, from users of all ages across the planet to investors (Goldman Sachs and Russian investment firm Digital Sky Technologies have recently invested half a billion in the company) to hardware manufacturers is one of the reasons the company is now valued at about $50 billion: 50 times the price tag (News - Alert) for which Yahoo offered to buy the company in 2006. (And look where Yahoo is today...not exactly burning up the revenue charts.)

The gadgets, wrote the Journal, are the result of a concerted effort on the part of Facebook to flesh out its open platform, which the company has been building since 2007. It was begun as a means to allow and encourage third-party Web sites, apps and services to easily share with Facebook. The platform is designed to be the “core of the Facebook experience,” Facebook chief technology officer Bret Taylor said in an interview, turning the site into a hub for its 550 million users' digital lives.

Tracey Schelmetic is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Tracey's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Tammy Wolf

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