Friday, April 5, 2013

Meet the new Facebook Home... Phone

AT&T, HTC and Facebook have teamed up to develop and launch the HTC First, the first and (so far) only smartphone built to feature Facebook Home. "Home is a completely new experience for your phone," said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's Founder and CEO. "With Home available right out of the box, you're getting the best quality experience for connecting with your friends."
Facebook Home changes the traditional Android interface and brings the News Feed to the forefront of the phone. Your Facebook News Feed will appear on the home screen when you turn on your phone without having to open an app or access a mobile website. Just sign into your Facebook account and begin using Home – no need to download or configurate anything.  Facebook Home streams real-time updates and newest photo uploads and gives the ability to chat with friends without jumping in and out of apps. 
The HTC First runs on AT&T's 4G LTE network.  AT&T has, according to the company, the nation’s largest 4G network, covering 288 million people.    
“The HTC First will offer the best Facebook Home experience on mobile, right out of the box.  That’s why we’re committed to this phone and making it exclusive in our stores,” said Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO, AT&T Mobility.
The so-called Facebook phone has been rumored for years now and this is not even the first attempt from Facebook and HTC. Facebook Home will also be available as a free download from the Google Play Store starting April 12. Home works on the HTC One X, HTC One X+, Samsung GALAXY S III and Samsung GALAXY Note II. Home will also work on the forthcoming HTC One and Samsung GALAXY S4, and on more devices in the coming months.
The main features of Facebook Home are:
  • Cover feed: A constant, fresh stream of photos and updates from your newsfeed, cover feed is always present when you wake up your phone.  It lets you stay up-to-date on your friends’ latest activities in real-time, all the time.  You can swipe through to see more photos and updates, double tap to “like” a post and comment right from cover feed.
  • Notifications: Notifications from apps and friends appear right on your home screen.  It’s easier to see when you have a missed call, calendar reminder or new message. Open a notification with a double tap or clear them away to see your Cover Feed.
  • Chat Heads: The mobile messenger lets you jump in and out of conversations while you do other things, like watch a video and browse the web.  Reply right from chat heads, or move them around if you're not ready to respond. Plus you can send and receive texts and Facebook messages from the same spot.     
  • App Launcher:  See your favorite apps and post right to Facebook from the same spot. You choose what’s on your app launcher—press and hold an app then drag it anywhere.      
  • Instagram:  HTC First is the only phone that comes with Instagram pre-loaded.
The HTC First will be available in four colors: black, white, red and pale blue.  The hardware is thin, with soft edges and sports a 4.3-inch glass display. Inside, the smartphone runs Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) with the new Facebook Home experience and incorporates a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor with dual-core CPU and 3G/4G world and multimode LTE.


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