The "Facebook phone" is here and, as expected, it is not a phone built by Facebook. Instead, the company unveiled "Facebook Home," a download that converts an Android phone into a Facebook-centric device, reports CNET. It will be available on a limited basis April 12 at the Google Play store. That's the same day HTC is rolling out its HTC First, the first phone to ship with Facebook Home in place. (It will run $99 with a two-year contract from AT&T, reports TechCrunch.) "We're not building a phone and we're not building an operating system," says CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "We're building something a whole lot deeper than an ordinary app."
- Sam Biddle, Gizmodo: "Facebook Home means replacing the important parts of your phone with Facebook stuff. As much as possible, apps are replaced by Facebook features—FB chats instead of texts, FB Camera instead of... camera, and so forth. And of course, an at-a-glance feed of everything your friends are doing—Facebook activity jacked directly into your brain."
- David Pierce, the Verge: "An app called Coverfeed overhauls the homescreen and the lockscreen, giving you updates on what your friends are doing without you having to launch an app, or even unlock your phone. You can comment or like posts from your homescreen — it feels incredibly native. Everything is full-screen and incredibly visual, really looking nothing like Android."
- Ina Fried, AllThingsD: It's not "a phone per se, but rather a series of customizations that replaces the look and feel of a standard Android phone with a set of Facebook apps, home screens, and messaging experiences."