Facebook to 'launch something awesome' next week

Mark Zuckerberg didn't say what his company has planned, but speculation abounds that it might have something to do with the mobile or tablet markets.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is promising something big for next week.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is promising something big for next week. Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said today that his company will "launch something awesome" next week, Reuters is reporting.

According to the news service, Zuckerberg told reporters in his company's Seattle office that the team there had developed the upcoming project. Facebook's Seattle office played an integral role in the development of the social network's recently improved mobile site, prompting Reuters to suggest the upcoming launch could be mobile- or tablet-related.

If the launch is tablet-related, it could be Facebook's long-awaited iPad application. The company currently offers an iPhone app, but iPad owners have so far been forced to use the full site. Earlier this month, The New York Times cited sources who said Facebook was readying an iPad app, and could be launching it in the coming weeks.

Then again, Facebook might unveil a new photo-sharing app for the iPhone. A couple weeks ago, TechCrunch announced that it had acquired a 50MB file containing images and documents on a new Facebook app that would allow users to share photos with others. That program, the blog claimed, wouldn't be integrated into Facebook's existing iPhone application, but would take advantage of the service's social graph.

If Facebook doesn't offer those platforms, it might just unveil a project TechCrunch spotted earlier this month, called Project Spartan. According to the blog, which cited anonymous sources, Spartan is designed to be an HTML5-based competitor to Apple's App Store. The service works in mobile Safari.

TechCrunch reported at the time that "80 or so" third-party developers had already signed on with Project Spartan, including FarmVille creator Zynga.

Whether any of these services might be the "something awesome" that launches next week, though, remains to be seen.

Facebook did not immediately respond to request for comment.