So, Is Google Building A Facebook Rival Or Not?

Facebook's former-CTO confirmed Google was building a Facebook "killer", perpetual rumourmonger Kevin Rose tweeted it'd be called "Google Me"- but Google has said (again) that "we're not working on a social network platform".

Going on, their head of mobile product development, Hugo Barra, said that they're not "working on a social network platform that's just going to be another social network platform". So, they're building an extra special social networking site?

"We do think that social is an ingredient for success for any app going forward, search and advertising being probably the best two examples that I would mention. So that's how we're thinking about the problem."

Google and Facebook have been at loggerheads for months now, but especially in recent weeks over users' address books. Google initially blocked Facebook users from being able to import their Gmail contacts to find friends on the site, over Facebook's lack of generosity with their data. Google's now relented - but that doesn't mean they're feeling warmer towards Zuckerberg and his cronies.

While Google may be treading on Facebook's turf with a social networking site (though you could say Google's "big in Brazil" site Orkut came first, launching just a couple of weeks before Facebook back in 2004), Facebook is said to be readying a "Gmail killer" for next week. My poor, poor head. [Reuters and TechCrunch]

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