paidContent reports that Finnish handset maker, Nokia, is in talks with Facebook to put social networking on the company's mobile phones. The placement of Facebook on handsets could be "as prominent as the YouTube button on the main screen of iPhone," says paidContent. As part of the deal, Nokia could could also purchase a stake in Facebook. Though the talks are at a very early stage, as paidContent says, there are a number of reasons why this makes sense for both companies.
As part of the ongoing funding round that valued Facebook at $15 billion last fall, the social network recently took and investment from the Samwar Brothers, who run the European Founders Fund. The investment is part of an effort to expand Facebook in the European market, and a tie-up with Nokia would further that goal. Nokia is the world's largest manufacturer of mobile handsets, owning nearly 40% of the market, and a deal with Facebook would be at the handset level rather than the carrier level -- which would help push Facebook out to more mobile users than if they made deals with service providers.
For its part, Nokia has been attempting to transform itself into a services company and shift emphasis from hardware to software and services. It went on a buying spree last year, purchasing Navteq, Avvenu, Twango, (coverage), and Enpocket. Nokia also operates its own mobile social network and has signed media deals with Universal and YouTube.