One of the first companies to make a Facebook Phone announced that it was going to shut down. Inq Mobile, which is based in the UK, posted this message on its website.
“Inq has done some exciting and innovative things over the past few years, but we’ll be closing our doors on 31st January 2014. Material will serve its final editions on the 28th January and, whilst SO.HO will continue to function after our closure, it will not be updated after this point.”
“It’s been truly exciting for us to turn Material and SO.HO from ideas we dreamed up into functioning products used by people across the globe. We’d like to thank everyone who downloaded Material and SO.HO, the people who gave us feedback, worked with us and cheered us on along the way.”
The company first started operation in 2007 first focusing on budget smartphones that have deep social integration. Its first smartphone was the INQ1 released in 2008 and had a 2.2 inch QVGA display. It had a 3.2MP camera and had several social apps such as Skype, Last.fm, Ebay, Facebook, Myspace and Windows Live Messenger. The company then followed this up with the INQ Mini 3G and the INQ Chat 3G.
The company is probably best known for its Inq Cloud Touch smartphone which is its first Android device launched last 2011. It had a tight Facebook integration and used an early version of SwiftKey.
In January of 2013 the company announced that it will no longer be involved in the hardware business instead concentrating on producing social software. Company CEO Ken Johnston was quoted as saying “We’ve finished up with hardware a year ago, and we’ve been working our app engine since then.”
As a software company Inq Mobile was able to release an app called MATERIAL in February 2013. This app is a content discovery engine available for iOS and Android devices. In May of the same year the company released its second app called SO.HO which is short for Social Homescreen and acts as an Android launcher.
With the company shutting down it will no longer be updating the apps that it released.