April 4, 2013
Facebook To Announce ‘HTC First’ Later Today
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
Today, Facebook is expected to announce their long-rumored phone in partnership with HTC. Members of the media have been invited to Facebook´s campus in Menlo Park, California today where the social giant will show off what they are calling their “new home on Android.”Alleged leaked images of this HTC phone hit the web yesterday, revealing a Facebook-friendly interface. The phone is expected to be called the “HTC First,” likely referring to the fact that this is the first phone running the deeply customized version of Google´s Android operating system. Though the event is slated to take place this afternoon, early leaked images and reports could reveal what to expect in the HTC First.
The new forked version of Android is expected to be called “Facebook Home,” meaning the social network´s invitations included a small hint to what they plan to unveil.
According to 9to5Google.com, the new Facebook Home interface will use plenty of minimalistic design cues as well as bright and bold photography in the background. The menus feature the obvious Facebook integration, though other social networks like Google Plus and Twitter are allowed to come along for the ride. One of the leaked images on 9to5Google reveals that the HTC First may incorporate Facebook profile pictures along with contacts. For instance, even text messages are tagged with that person´s profile picture. Though this isn´t anything new, it could reveal just how deeply Facebook is baked into Facebook Home on the HTC First.
TechCrunch has some details on the internals of the phone which HTC may be internally referring to as the HTC Myst.
According to their sources, the HTC First will sport a 4.3-inch display capable of producing 720p images. Behind the screen, HTC is rumored to have paired a Qualcomm dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor with 1GB of RAM. A five megapixel camera is expected on the back of the phone. If these specs are correct, Facebook´s first phone will be launching as a mediocre offering at best. Apple´s iPhone 5 features 1GB of RAM and a dual-core processor, but their Retina display has been one of the best on the market. Phones such as Samsung´s upcoming Galaxy S 4 and HTC´s One best the iPhone both in screen resolution and processor. Additionally, a native Facebook experience may be convenient, but connecting to Facebook on any modern smartphone is as easy as opening an app.
If Android superphone users aren´t impressed with the HTC First, it´s likely they´ll soon have other smartphone options running Facebook Home. According to the Wall Street Journal, the social network is in talks with other smartphone manufacturers to bring their version of Android to multiple handsets, making HTC´s First just that.
Facebook will hold their press event today at 10 am Pacific, 1 pm Eastern time. redOrbit will have all the details following the announcement.