The social networking giant Facebook which has more than 1 billion users unveiled Facebook Home on Thursday- A new way to experience Facebook on mobile devices. Facebook Home is a skin overlay on top of Android. While Facebook Home will be available for latest Android phones like HTC One, One X, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Galaxy Note II, etc., but Facebook will also be partnering with mobile manufacturers for integrating Facebook Home by default. The first of such partnership is done between HTC and Facebook launching aptly named HTC First. So, is the much rumored Facebook phone in the form of Facebook Home and HTC First is worth buying or not? Read on to find our views about them.
As stated earlier, Facebook Home is essentially an Android home screen launcher replacing Android’s lock screen, app launcher, notifications and chat system. In simple words, you’ll start seeing functionality of Facebook Home as soon as you turn on your device or wake it up from sleep. The Facebook Home has following features:
1) Cover feed- This is the home screen which shows your Facebook newsfeed of your friends’ posts, photos, links, etc. You can take actions on them right from your home screen such as double tapping to like, commenting by clicking comment option, and swiping go see other posts.
2) Notifications- All your emails, messages, Facebook notifications, calendar reminder are shown on your home screen only. You can take actions upon them or dismiss them altogether.
3) Chat Heads-It’s an intuitive way of staying connected with your friends through chats without the need to close the app you might be using in your phone. Whenever a new SMS or Facebook message arrives, a chat head will appear in your phone’s screen, you can open it or let it remain at any part of the screen or remove it for the time being. Opening the chat head for replying will open the Facebook Messenger on top of the app you’re working upon. Thus, without closing any app, you can stay connected with your friends.
4) App Launcher- Instead of having a complete list of apps, Facebook’s app launcher allows you to bookmark your favorite apps in the app launcher. You can organize this app launcher according to your most needed apps. You can also write a status, add a photo, or check-in directly from App Launcher.
Facebook Home is perfect for Facebook addicts as it gives you access to everything – checking posts by your friends, writing status update, etc. without even opening the Facebook app.
The phone measures 4.96 x 2.56 x 0.35 inches with a weight of 124 grams. It has a beautiful 4.3-inches 720 p LCD screen equating to 341 ppi. HTC First is powered by 1.4 GHz dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor with 1 GB RAM. It has an in-built memory of 16 GB, with no slot for expandable memory. It has a rear camera of 5 MP capable of shooting 720 p videos and a front-facing camera of 1.6 MP.
HTC First has Android 4.1 Jelly Bean as its OS with Facebook Home on the top of it. It will be available in 4 colors- Red, Blue, Black and White.
The hardware of HTC First is decent or say is pretty much that of a mid-range smartphone, but the USP of HTC First is the new Facebook Home launcher on top of Android.
The much talked about Facebook phone is good but not great. There’s nothing special being provided in it as all the Facebook apps- Facebook native app, Facebook messenger, poke n integral are already available for download from play store. Add to the fact that hardware of HTC First is just average. There is not a compelling reason enough to purchase HTC First in comparison to other smartphones. The phone will attract those who stick to Facebook all-day-long, who stay connected to their Facebook friends.
What do you think about the HTC First Facebook phone? Let us know in comments below.