Friday, April 5, 2013

HTC First - Facebook dedicated smartphone

Few weeks of rumors and speculations and here we have - new HTC device, called HTC First and created together with (and for!) Facebook. It's surely not a flagship model, but also not a low-end device.

Actually it has quite nice specifications:

  • Platform: Android 4.1
  • Processor: Qualcomm® MSM8930AA 1.4Ghz, dual-core
  • Memory: 16 GB, 1 GB RAM
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900/2100, HSDPA 21/5.76, LTE 4/17
  • Display: 4.3-inch, HD 720p
  • Battery: 2000mAh (non-removable)
  • Main camera: 5 MP camera with auto focus, LED flash, BSI sensor, f/2.0 aperture, 28mm lens, 1080p video recording
  • Front camera: 1.6 MP camera
  • Dimensions: 4.96 x 2.56 x 0.35 (in) (LxWxT)
  • Weight: 4.37 oz

What is special about this device, is very deep Facebook integration. It has its own Facebook launcher instead of HTC Sense launcher. What else?

  • Cover feed: A constant, fresh stream of photos and updates from your newsfeed, cover feed is always present when you wake up your phone.  It lets you stay up-to-date on your friends’ latest activities in real-time, all the time.  You can swipe through to see more photos and updates, double tap to “like” a post and comment right from cover feed.  To learn more about cover feed, check out this video.
  • Notifications: Notifications from apps and friends appear right on your home screen.  It’s easier to see when you have a missed call, calendar reminder or new message. Open a notification with a double tap or clear them away to see your Cover Feed.  To learn more about notifications, check out this video.
  • Chat Heads: The mobile messenger lets you jump in and out of conversations while you do other things, like watch a video and browse the web.  Reply right from chat heads, or move them around if you're not ready to respond. Plus you can send and receive texts and Facebook messages from the same spot.  To learn more about chat heads, check out this video.
  • App Launcher:  See your favorite apps and post right to Facebook from the same spot. You choose what’s on your app launcher—press and hold an app then drag it anywhere.
  • Instagram:  HTC First is the only phone that comes with Instagram pre-loaded.

Personally, I'm very curious how this device will work with its custom launcher and what will be customers judgement. I think it has a huge potential. The idea of new custom launcher is more then interesting. Let's take a quick pick how it looks like:





To me, it seems to be very simplified version of Android launcher. It might be a great choice for users who are not expecting their phone to be multimedia all-in-one device, but they want to easily stay in touch with their friends using the most popular social channel. There is also Instagram pre-installed, so sharing your great moments captured with 5 MP back camera will be easy as well. Additionally, it is very likely that the overall system performance in HTC First will be very good. Qualcomm 1.4 GHz dual-core CPU in pair with 1GB of RAM memory will probably bring you smooth user interface experience, considering the fact that device doesn't have pretty heavy HTC Sense on board. So, do you think it is a device for you?

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