Just when you thought the Facebook phone rumors were finally put to bed with the release of the social network’s Home Android overlay and its flagship device, the HTC First, The Wall Street Journal reported that executives from scuffling handset maker BlackBerry met with Facebook executives last week to gauge their interest in bidding in the company, citing sources familiar with the matter.
Years of speculation about a Facebook phone may or may not have been quelled with the debut of the HTC First in April, but what about a Facebook camera? Canon is currently accepting pre-orders exclusively on its online store for the Facebook-ready PowerShotN, which is set for a September release.
When Facebook introduced its Home Android overlay in April, Co-Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed the basic concepts behind Home and what Facebook was seeking to accomplish with the product. However, for users seeking far more detail on the process of bringing Home to life, Product Design Director Julie Zhou posted a video on Vimeo featuring a presentation by four designers who worked on Home.
The good news for AT&T: Ralph de la Vega, CEO of AT&T Mobility, told CNET the mobile carrier sold out its inventory of the HTC First, the flagship phone for the Facebook Home Android overlay. The bad news for AT&T: It had to lower the price of the handset to $0.99 in order to do so.
In the past, Facebook has used polls in sponsored stories to collect user feedback on features such as News Feed. The social network is at it again, this time seeking input on its Home Android overlay.
Is Facebook attempting to use reverse psychology, or merely attempting to address one of the most prominent concerns about its Home Android overlay? The Facebook Mobile page published a post reminding Home users that they can turn the overlay off and use their devices normally.
The bad news continues to roll in for Facebook Home and the HTC First, as TechCrunch reported that U.K. mobile carrier EE and French counterpart Orange both confirmed that they will not roll out the only mobile device to come preloaded with the Android overlay.
Last week, AT&T lowered the price of the HTC First, the first phone to come pre-loaded with Facebook Home, to $0.99 for customers who committed to two-year agreements. Now, BGR is reporting that the device’s poor sales have led AT&T to discontinue the HTC First altogether.
When Facebook introduced Home, as well as the flagship HTC First device, it felt weird to call it a phone. There’s little to no customization, as there is with most smart phones on the market, and it seems like that’s what turned off users. But the planned updates announced Thursday show that Facebook is planning to turn Home-enabled phones back into, well, phones. However, Facebook Home could just be a guinea pig for the company to develop something better in the future.