Facebook Home gets users interested, but still scoring poor ratings
Facebook Home has notched up over 500,000 downloads in its first nine days on the Google Play store. The app is currently only available on a limited number of handsets including the Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note 2, HTC One X, HTC One X+ and the new HTC First. It is also only compatible with specified devices that also support Android 4.0 ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’ or higher, leaving most Android users unable to install it.
Company promises Home for international Android users 'later today'
Facebook is today releasing a major update of its iOS app, v6.0. The biggest addition is Chat Heads, something recently introduced to Android via Facebook Home and an updated Messenger app. Unlike Android, the iOS Chat Heads can only run within the Facebook app, but do let people keep tabs on conversations without having to leave other views. Heads can be dragged around a screen or dismissed entirely.
Would likely be different experience from Android phones
Facebook Home or some of its concepts could make their way to iOS and Windows Phone, Bloomberg reports. In an interview with the publication, Facebook product director Adam Mosseri says that negotiations are underway with Apple and Microsoft. "We’ve shown them what we’ve built and we’re just in an ongoing conversation," he states.
Messaging system from Facebook Home included without launcher
Facebook has rolled out part of its upcoming Facebook Home launcher in an Android app update, before the company released its new phone software initiative. Facebook Messenger (Google Play) now has the option to enable the Chat Heads pop-up contacts onto phones and tablets, without the need to install the complete Facebook Home suite itself.
Facebook phone first with non-Sense Android install since 2010
The HTC First, the upcoming smartphone preloaded with Facebook Home, will give users the option of turning off the Facebook launcher. Those opting to remove the socially-focused user interface will be able to use a stock installation of Android, and effectively becomes the first phone from the manufacturer to run without an overlay, such as Sense, since the T-Mobile G2.
Android launcher brings messages from contacts in front of apps
Facebook has officially announced its previously leaked, social network-based launcher, one that is said to center the experience around people rather than apps. The Facebook Home launcher replaces the typical home screen seen on Android, and brings conversations with contacts to the foreground, rather than leaving them confined inside individual applications.