Mark Zuckerberg Unveils Facebook Home Launcher for Android

Today is the day that Facebook invited the press to “Come See Our New Home on Android.” Well, it’s not a new phone nor it’s a customized Android operating system, but a new Android launcher.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced “Home”, a new Android launcher that will turn your Android device into a “social” phone. Home will be available for free download on Google Play Store starting April 12.

According to Zuckerberg, the new Facebook Home launcher for Android focuses on people and not tasks and apps, as most smartphones are built upon. The launcher is designed to make it easier for users to know and see what’s happening with friends and what content they’ve been sharing.

Facebook Home

“Home isn’t a phone or operating system, and it’s also more than just an app. Home is a completely new experience that lets you see the world through people, not apps.”

The new Home launcher for Android will work on HTC One X, HTC One X+, Samsung GALAXY S III and Samsung GALAXY Note II. Additionally, Facebook has announced that it will be made available on HTC One, the Samsung GALAXY S4 as well as new devices in the coming months

The home screen of Home focuses on a feature called Facebook Cover Feed, which replaces the lock screen and of course the home screen. It’s a feed comprised of stores and photos that constantly keeps updating as to see what’s happening with your friends. Home also features a new notifications system that lets you scrub through multiple alerts at once.

Home will be available for download on April 12th in the US, however, international users will have to wait a little longer. Also, the launcher will be available to users of Android Jelly Bean and Ice Cream Sandwich, but not Gingerbread.

A notable feature is the Facebook Chat Heads, with which you can chat with friends. For instance, when a friend messages you, it pops up that friend’s face and you can tap on the face to continue the conversation even when you’re using other apps.

Facebook has created the Facebook Home Program to allow handset makers to optimize the Home experience. Partners include AT&T, Orange, Qualcomm, HTC, Samsung, Huawei, Sony, EE, ZTE, Lenovo, and Alcatel.

In the same event, Facebook also announced the new HTC First smartphone, which will be the first device that is optimized for Facebook Home. Click here for more details on the features and specifications.

Here’s the official commercial video uploaded on YouTube:

Hands-On With The HTC First Running The Gesture-Powered Facebook Home

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Joel Fernandes

Joel Fernandes (G+) is a tech enthusiast and a social media blogger. During his leisure time, he enjoys taking photographs, and photography is one of his most loved hobbies. You can find some of his photos on Flickr. He does a little of web coding, and maintains a tech blog of his own - Techo Latte. Joel is currently pursuing his Masters in Computer Application from Bangalore, India. You can get in touch with him on Twitter - @joelfernandes, or visit his Facebook Profile for more information.