HTC First, the Facebook phone, leaks ahead of April 4 announcement

Facebook junkies, rejoice! It seems the rumours about a Facebook phone being announced at the upcoming event on April 4 are not just fantasy.

According to noted smartphone tipster @evleaks, HTC and Facebook will combine to launch the HTC First, an Android-based smartphone that will bring a new homescreen experience. Thanks to Facebook’s association, the new UI will be like any standard Android launcher, that will come with deeper Facebook integration and easier sharing features. The whole user experience package will supposedly be called Facebook Home.

Besides nifty Facebook-related features, the phone will come with the standard core Android apps and will be available in four colours – white, black, red and light blue. With Facebook involved, the modified version of Android will focus heavily on social networking. much like other launchers such as ADW or Go Launcher, Facebook Home won't change the core of Android but will provide a new way of interacting with the OS.

The leaked images of the HTC First (Image credit: Evleaks)

The leaked images of the HTC First (Image credit: Evleaks)


The phone could possibly have faster access to Facebook’s vital functions such as status updates, uploading photos, the Messenger app and even Instagram, which was bought over by Facebook last year. It will be interesting to see if HTC retains the BlinkFeed homescreen experience, which debuted with the HTC One, as well.

Previous rumours about the HTC First say it will have a 4.3-inch display, along with a 5 megapixel rear camera and a 1.6 megapixel front-facing snapper for video calls. Reportedly, HTC First will come with 16GB of internal storage.

To promote, their new device, HTC and Facebook are supposedly working on a multi-million dollar advertising campaign in Southern California. Sources close to the development of the campaign said that it will focus on the user experience and the way we interact with social networks, rather than any spec point or the hardware itself. One of the tag-lines for the device is apparently, “more than just an app.”

The HTC First looks uncannily like an iPhone, complete with a lock/unlock and power button on top. Below the display are three buttons – back, home and menu/recent apps. It looks rather plain from the pictures, so far. Let’s hope the real phone adds some distinction to what could be the first Facebook phone.

Android Police, which found some time to play around with a leaked APK of Facebook Home revealed that it could be coming to other phones as well. Some permissions within the software also hint that Facebook Home could come to other devices with HTC Sense, stock Android, and TouchWiz.

Are you excited about a possible Facebook phone? What FB-related features would you like to see? Let us know in the comments.

Published Date: Apr 03, 2013 09:30 am | Updated Date: Apr 03, 2013 09:30 am