Facebook Launches “Facebook Home” For Android

Facebook-Home-bannerYesterday Facebook announced the release of Facebook Home, a social overlay for the Android operating system. If you’re an avid Facebooker then this is well worth a look…

Getting Social

When Zuckerberg & Co announced Facebook home, they pushed it as an easy to use, fully immersive social media experience. Allowing users to communicate, interact and share with their friends right from the home screen.

“We all want to share and connect. That’s how we discover new information and build meaningful relationships. But today, phones are built around tasks and apps. To see what’s happening with your friends, you pull out your phone and navigate through a series of separate apps.”

To solve the problem of “navigating through a series of apps”, Facebook decided to pretty much embed it’s ecosystem right into Android, the result of which is Facebook Home. They go on to elaborate within the announcement post…

“Our answer is Home. Home isn’t a phone or operating system, and it’s also more than just an app. Home is a completely new experience that lets you see the world through people, not apps.”

So what can Facebook Home do?Faceboogk home screen

Well, Facebook Home basically replaces your Android home screen with a custom version of your home feed from Facebook. This means that you get your updates straight away without the arduous task of unlocking your screen and tapping the Facebook icon.

Your home screen can also manage alerts like messages, mentions & replies. It also manages ‘normal’ Android alerts like emails and text messages. These can all be manipulated around the screen to be stowed away for later, or you can respond from where you are.

There is of course still an app launcher that allows you to use all of your other Android apps, but these are very much second place to the Facebook Home system. They are found by clicking on the ‘orb’ which has your face on it then selecting the app menu. There is a launcher that contains shortcuts to your favourite apps and also a full list of all your apps to choose from.

Privacy concerns

Facebook aren’t exactly known for their nice privacy policies, and Facebook Home is no exception to this. The way that it completely takes over your phone means that it could interact with many, many things on your phone, including your personal data, like contacts that aren’t on Facebook, your call history, text messages and of course your other apps.

For me personally this is very worrying, I don’t really like Facebook because of it’s privacy issues, so having it integrated completely into my phone is a complete no go zone for me personally. If Facebook Home can inject itself into things like adverts, then it could spell a huge loss in profit for Google, as they make a lot of money through advertising on Android through free apps.

However, other people love Facebook, they don’t care about the privacy issues, and they spend their lives on it. For these people Facebook Home could be an absolute win. It looks good, and from what I see works really well (if you’re an avid Facebooker).

How can I get Facebook Home?

Facebook Home will be available for installation from the Google Play store, for free, from April 12th. Currently the only devices that are supported are the HTC One X, HTC One X+, The Samsung Galaxy S3, and the Samsung Galaxy Note 2. Facebook Home will also work with the new Samsung Galaxy S4, and will surely be available on a number of other devices after the initial release.

I have a Galaxy S3, but I really can’t see myself using this. However, I may install it and post some screenshots for you lovely people to enjoy, but that will depend totally on what access Facebook Home requires of my phone. To get more information about Facebook Home, check out the announcement on the Facebook blog.

Will you be installing Facebook Home on your device? Is this a great social move for mobile devices everywhere or is it a privacy disaster? As always your thoughts and comments are welcome below…

Facebook Launches “Facebook Home” For Android
User Rating: 0 (0 votes)