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Apple Ping unfriends meanie Facebook

Snazzy new social thing walled off

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Ping, Apple's latest foray into social networking, won't play nice with Facebook - despite the connection appearing in Steve Jobs's on-stage demonstration and in the documentation.

Facebook integration was obviously planned, and references persist in the application and documentation - some early adopters even report being able to connect to their Facebook accounts - but Jobs told All Things Digital that Facebook made unreasonable demands, so the connection was pulled at the last minute.

At the launch event the Apple boss was snagged by All Things Digital and asked about the possibility of Ping integrating with Facebook. Jobs responded, with a shrug, that it might be possible. But eagle-eyed fans soon noticed that the screenshots used during his presentation showed Facebook integration, and some users report being able to connect to their Facebook friends through Ping.

Facebook provides APIs for access, but requires larger users to negotiate agreements. Apple obviously plans to be a significant player, but couldn't get a deal together in time, citing Facebook's "onerous terms" as the barrier that caused the integration to be pulled after the launch.

So Apple is still scrubbing references to Facebook from the Ping website and documentation, and Ping users will be forced to console themselves with the 160 million iTunes users that Apple claims. ®

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