Review: HTC First and Facebook Home
The HTC First is an interesting beast. Though it is a mid-range piece of hardware, it clearly has high-end aspirations. HTC designed a simple, but effective smartphone that it comfortable to hold and easy to use. The screen easily surpasses most others in this class of device, and the performance on AT&T's network was fine. My only complaints about the hardware are the weak speakers and mediocre camera.
Facebook Home, which is available as a separate download to a bunch of other smartphones, is the selling point as far as AT&T, HTC, and Facebook are concerned. Facebook Home completely replaces the standard Android user interface for one that offers nothing but Facebook content. Whether or not you use it depends on how you prioritize information. Personally, I don't find it appealing because it doesn't give me the info I want from my smartphone's home screen.
The good news is, you can turn Facebook Home off. If you do, you'll have a nice piece of hardware running the cleanest version of Android this side of a Nexus device.
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Hands-On: HTC First
The HTC First is an Android smartphone dedicated to Facebook Home. Here is a really quick look at the hardware.
HTC Announces the HTC First, a Facebook-Centric Phone
HTC today announced the HTC First, a new phone that takes advantage of the new Facebook Home user interface. It runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, but has Facebook Home preloaded as the user interface.
Facebook Announces Facebook Home for Android
Facebook today announced a new push into the mobile space with new Android-based software that exists as its own user interface overlay. The UI overlay is called Facebook Home, and can be used to replace the home screen of select Android smartphones.
Hands-On: Facebook Home
Facebook Home is a new user interface overlay for Android devices that "prioritizes people, not apps." Phone Scoop takes it for a spin.
Facebook Releases 'Lite' App for Android Phones
Facebook today announced Facebook Lite, a version of the social network that uses less data and will work on less-robust network connections. The Facebook Lite app is just 1MB to install, and Facebook claims it loads quickly and offers core features, such as News Feed, status updates, photos, and notifications.