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Dumb ideas? Facebook to buy Opera? Build own smartphone?


According to Pocket-lint, sources close to Facebook have told them that the newly IPOed social networking company is considering buying Opera Software, the Opera Web browser’s parent company. Another rumor has it that Facebook wants to build its own smartphone. I don’t see either move making a lot of sense.

If Facebook were to buy Opera Software, its price might be on the same order as the billion plus it paid for Instagram. Opera currently has a market cap of $679-million. In addition, Opera has a small, but loyal, number of users. Still, loyal as they may be, Opera has long trailed Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari in sheer number of users. In April 2012, by StatCounter’s numbers, Opera only had 1.72% of the world Web browser market. This leaves it, as it has been for years, solidly in last place in the Web browser derby.

In short, Facebook certainly wouldn’t be increasing its market-share with its own Web browser. Heck, Facebook doesn’t even list Opera as one of its supported browsers.

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