Facebook Is Smarter Than You Think

If you think that Facebook (NASDAQ: FB  ) is big now, just wait.

Bloomberg is reporting that the social networking giant is developing an app that tracks the location of its users. Two unnamed sources "with knowledge of the matter" claim that the program will help Facebook's more than 1 billion active users find friends that are nearby.

Yes, you've seen this before.

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) was so fond of its Find My Friends feature last year that it made it a star in an iPhone commercial last summer starring Martin Scorsese.

If Apple didn't seem to gain a lot of traction with its friend-finding feature, why should Facebook fare any better?

Let's just say that I don't want to find my so-called friends
There are several reasons why a location-based application fails. The biggest stumbling block is failing to achieve critical mass. As big as Apple is when it comes to consumer tech, it never really did get enough people to turn on the "Find My Friends" feature.

Apple isn't perfect, especially when it comes to social media. Ping failed as a social music add-on to iTunes because folks just don't associate Apple with the art of social.

Facebook doesn't have that problem, obviously.

Another big reason for the failure of location-based platforms is apathy.

Foursquare and even Facebook check-ins have their fans, but to most consumers those "look where I am" apps are limited to hipster braggarts. If that's all that we're getting out of Facebook's new app when it reportedly rolls out next month, color me unexcited.

The real promise here is if Facebook can marry location with commerce.

Following the bleeder
Groupon
(NASDAQ: GRPN  ) is a broken company with a flawed model in many ways. However, one thing that it's doing right is Groupon Now. The ability to find instant deals by location -- something that forward-thinking merchants are also doing with Foursquare and Facebook check-ins to get the word out -- is a game changer.

Yelp (NYSE: YELP  ) is another company doing right by location. The app uses your location to search for well-reviewed places to eat, get a mani-pedi, or buy vintage clothing. Yelp is no stranger to commerce. It offers merchant deals. Foodies can also fire up OpenTable within Yelp to book reservations at popular restaurants. It's big, and investors will get a snapshot of how big this business may be when Yelp and OpenTable report fresh quarterly financials on Thursday.

However, Facebook has the ability to outdo anyone in this space.

Remember Graph Search?

The market wasn't terribly impressed with the new search platform that scours through friends -- and friends of friends -- to drum up relevant responses. However, put the location-based app that Facebook is working on and Graph Search beta together and you have something beautiful.

Rock on
Let's say that you're at a Matt & Kim concert -- yes, you're a hipster -- and your Facebook app alerts you that a high school buddy and a cousin that you haven't seen in a few months are there. Why not get together for a bite after the show? Graph Search can help you find that sushi place nearby that your colleague goes to every other week. You can hit up a sandwich shop that a friend of your cousin's friend actually owns. How about that Korean BBQ place two blocks away offering Facebook guests 20% off?

It can and all come together. It will.

Right now it may just seem creepy. Most people won't opt in, and those that do may feel guilty about it. You're no stalker. You're just a Matt & Kim fan that enjoys some Korean BBQ with friends. Since you will only have the location data of friends that opt in, it's not as if the potential interactions will come off as strange.

In time, the same people that have privacy concerns will come around. If it makes an experience better, cheaper, or more convenient, it's going to win.

Facebook doesn't have a choice.

Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL  ) is becoming a bigger competitor. Yes, Google Plus hasn't eaten into Facebook's popularity, but Google already has strength in mobile (through Android), local lead generation (through Google AdWords), and venue reviews (through recent acquisitions of Zagat and Frommer's). Facebook's advantage over Google Plus is critical mass, and it can't afford to squander that kind of opportunity.

Facebook has already changed the way we stay in touch with old friends, acquaintances, and family members. Now it's on the cusp of revolutionizing an even meatier aspect of our lives. As long as Facebook can pull this off without coming off as creepy, it's on to something here.

Face to Facebook
After the world's most hyped IPO turned out to be a dunce, most investors probably don't even want to think about shares of Facebook. But there are things every investor needs to know about this company. We've outlined them in our newest premium research report. There's a lot more to Facebook than meets the eye, so read up on whether there is anything to "like" about it today, and we'll tell you whether we think Facebook deserves a place in your portfolio. Access your report by clicking here.


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  • Report this Comment On February 05, 2013, at 8:51 PM, 12368818 wrote:

    Nokia is preparing a big come back.

    Nokia´s Vietnam plant is hiring 10 000 employees to produce 45 million phones a quarter. Nokia still has other 6 factories, the biggest one is in Beijing right now.

    Why Nokia is more likely the third horse in the race than BlackBerry:

    1) Competitive prices (with those prices Nokia has already returned to profitability in the recent quarter).

    2) Ecosystem (Windows Phones, Windows tablets, Windows PCs, Xbox games, Xbox Music, Microsoft Office, SkyDrive and so on).

    3) Nokia´s exclusive innovations in Lumia phones

    (PureView camera technology, HD+ sensitive screen technology, advanced mapping platform Here and City Lens, free music with no adds, offline turn by turn GPS, rich sound recording etc).

    4) China Mobile and China Unicom are subsidizing Lumia 920/Lumia 920T for a 2-year or 3-year contract starting from 0 or 1 yuan.

    Beside price competition, Nokia has already partnered with the two biggest operators in China

    (China Mobile and China Unicom together have about 90% of all subscribers in China, and China is now the biggest smartphone market in the world because of the huge population).

    5) Nokia has been just voted as the most trusted brand in the world´s second largest country India, where Nokia´s Asha phones are also selling very well.

    6) Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) has advanced and competitive technology to build LTE networks.

    According to the Verge and other sources, Nokia may launch these devices as early as February at MWC:

    Lumia Eos (PureView camera phone)

    Lumia Catwalk (international flagship phone)

    Lumia Laser (Verizon flagship phone)

    Windows RT tablet (with added battery in the cover)

    Nokia which has come down 90% from its highest is a stock to consider,

    because it is extremely cheap and the reward can be one of the biggest in NYSE for the future.

    Nokia is a stock with great upside opportunity and why:

    1) Nokia´s bankruptcy is already remote.

    Nokia has increased net cash to about $5.7 billion.

    Nokia´s worst loss has been $290 million a quarter in 2012.

    Even with this kind of loss, Nokia could still deal by its own net cash for at least 4 years!

    2) Nokia won´t have to deal with that kind of loss in the future and why

    A. Nokia has cut cost expenses. The layoff in 2012 starts to be fully effective in 2013.

    B. Now Nokia has to pay royalty to Microsoft, but Nokia has patent incomes.

    C. Nokia has managed to make the important tough work for the basis of its new platform WP.

    Nokia has already sold over 15 million Lumia phones up to date (9.9 million units from Lumia debut till the end of September 2012 + 4.4 million units in the last quarter of 2012 + January 2013).

    D. Nokia has now a high end phone that can make "halo effects" and be compared to Apple´s and Samsung´s most high-end phone, the Lumia 920.

    The demand of this phone is still high in many countries around the world. The 4Q12´s Lumia sales did not include the sales of Lumia 920 in many countries, such as India, Asia-Pacific, UAE, Latin America, and many other countries around the world yet, because the phone was arriving these countries only starting from January 2013.

    Even in Europe, many countries start to get this phone starting 1Q13, for example the Netherlands announced the phone arriving in January.

    And China Mobile received only first lot of Lumias 920T around Christmas, the second and third lot and further have arrived China, and the phone is still selling out.

    E. China Mobile deal. When now, both China Mobile and China Unicom are subsidizing the Lumia 920 heavily, the 2-year or 3-year contract is starting from

    0 or 1 yuan, and considering only less than 1/5 of Chinese people are using highest-end smartphones,

    this will result into a huge number of 2-year or 3-year contract users for Nokia in China! Besides, 3G penetration in China is still very low, there is a huge opportunity there. Additionally, among the highest end phones, Nokia Lumia 920 is significantly much cheaper than for example iPhone 5 and Galaxy Note II. Nokia has an advantage in both the price competition and the biggest carriers´ backing in China!

    F. Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN). During these few months NSN has won many 3G and 4G contracts in many countries.

    According to NSN, they have network equipment that can boost the speed of 4G many times faster. This shows that, beside PureView camera technology, HD+ sensitive screen technology, advanced mapping platform HERE and City Lens, Nokia has also top innovations in building 4G LTE networks.

    G. MWC is coming soon. There are still more to come from Nokia.

    According to The Verge, Nokia will launch PureView camera phone, and also Lumia Catwalk (code name) and Lumia Laser (code name) for Verizon.

    According to CEO Stephen Elop, Nokia is also planning a lot of interesting things with Verizon.

    Nokia is likely launching tablet as well, even with some loyal fans of Nokia around the world buying some of Nokia´s tablets, this will be a good gain for Nokia.

    Nokia will launch more Lumia phones in the coming months to attract different consumer demands. More lower price-point,

    mid-range and high-end WP8 Lumias are to come.

    In 1Q13, beside Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 which are making their way to more markets and with better supplies, Nokia is also attracting the mass markets with budget WP phones Lumia 620 and Lumia 505.

    Nokia´s Navteq has beaten Google Maps for example by signing contracts with Toyota and Ford and many other car companies.

    F. Asha phones. Asha phones are now selling almost 10 million units a quarter.

    Asha phones are affordable and competitive. Asha phones have now more and more smartphone features.

    Apart from features like Facebook, Twitter etc. Asha phones

    have internet access and access to thousands of Nokia´s most popular apps.

    Nokia has also brought an app called "Nearby" into Asha phones. Nearby is almost the same as City Lens in Lumia phones which is exclusive and unique in mapping and location data.

    There is still plenty of room for Asha phones to grow, because the price is competitive (cheapest android is right now about $100, while Asha is only about $70 without any contract).

    Apart from the features and price mentioned above, there are important and good selling points in Asha phones against cheapest androids, for example 40 free most popular games!

    Asha phones are still profitable for Nokia, because the OS is from Nokia itself, Nokia does not have to pay royalty for it.

    3) While bankruptcy is remote, Nokia´s stock price is still heavily undervalued.

    NYSE tech stocks are usually 2x book value, Nokia is still way much below that.

    According to Morningstar´s valuation, the sum of parts of Nokia (NSN, Navteq, feature phones, smartphones and patent portfolio)

    is worth much more than Nokia´s stock price right now, not to mention Nokia´s $5.7 billion net cash added to that value!

    Two years ago NOK was still about $15, now the stock is only over $4, the reason is that the stock has been over sold.

    Nokia is the most short sold stock in both Helsinki and New York! The shorts are still over 20% in Nokia´s total share number which is approximately 3.75 billion shares.

    This is a huge number, considering Apple´s short interest is only around 1% and Samsung´s around 2%. When Nokia is here to stay, the shorts need to be covered and the stock will skyrocket from these levels.

    Nokia Apple Intel Microsoft Cirrus Logic

    0.32 3.0 2 3.0 3.76

    Note that Nokia is currently selling at 0.32 price/sales ratio. This means that if the company manages to restructure and return to normal profitability, the stock has the potential to become a 10x bagger (even from today's price levels) - assuming the market will value Nokia 3.0x sales like Apple or Microsoft. But even a price/sales ratio of 2, like Intel has, means a 6x bagger from these levels.

    Nokia is an opportunity with big upside.

    Nokia´s shorts have even increased from the last two weeks.

    In NYSE Nokia short interest has hit 8.3%, and in Helsinki Nokia short interest has also hit record high 12.15% (this number only counted with investors with over 0.5% of short positions, below 0.5% not listed because of EU law).

    The percentage numbers are counted with

    Nokia´s total share number which is approximately 3.75 billion shares.

  • Report this Comment On February 06, 2013, at 12:13 AM, KevinniveK wrote:

    How bout if u just go to a concert and enjoy it rather than diss the artist and annoy people around u by f$cking around with your iToy the whole time ?

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