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Facebook Home: What It’s All About

Is Facebook Home the next big thing in the mobile world; or is it Facebook’s biggest blunder ever? The answer to that question  depends not just on who you ask, but also  on whether you think Home is supposed to be a phone or an app.

Facebook (Phone) Home

The first thing to know about the Facebook Home phone is that it isn’t an operating system like Android or iOS. Home is really just a series of Facebook-focused apps that come pre-loaded on an HTC First phone.

Home apps, as a whole, put Facebook at the forefront of the phone’s interface on just about every level. With Home, your newsfeed; Facebook messaging; and your favorite friends are all accessible from the phone’s front screen.

If you’re a Facebook power user who wants instant access to your Facebook log-in, this is the phone you’ve been waiting for.

Smartphone owners as a whole, however,  haven’t exactly embraced the idea of a Facebook dominated phone. As of this writing, Home phones were being unloaded for just $.99, that’s down from their original $99 list price.

Facebook Home

The other side of Facebook Home is a standalone group of apps that makes Facebook dominate your current phone creating a, de facto, Facebook phone. So far, Home is only available for download on a small number of HTC and Samsung Galaxy phones and isn’t available for iPhone users at all.

Releasing Home to a limited market like this might have been a good idea because Home has not exactly been racking up the great reviews. On Google Play, user reviews describe Home as, “buggy,” when they’re being nice about things.

As it turns out, many end-users want a little Facebook and not the Facebook saturation served up by Home. They also want apps that aren’t too buggy and plenty of user reviews describe an app that full of flaws and seems rushed-to-market. (8,000 of the 17,000 user reviews on Google Play are one-star.)

As an app, Facebook Home is tanking fast but it’s nowhere near dead.

Why Launch Home?

You’ve probably noticed that Google has its hands in almost every corner of the Internet and Facebook wants to do the same thing. It seems safe to look at the Home phone and apps as a soft launch of something bigger and, hopefully, better on the Facebook mobile front.

Facebook officials say they haven’t given up hope on Home but it’s clear that the social giant’s big mobile play has been a big flop.

Will you be using Facebook Home? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.