Mike Isaac

Recent Posts by Mike Isaac

How to Turn Your Handset Into a Facebook Phone

Home_PhonesFacebook unveiled “Home” this morning, the company’s modified version of the Android software able to be installed on Android devices.

How to get it? On April 12, head on over to Google’s Play store and search for “Facebook Home.” Download the software — it’s apparently a quick install, and should load on your phone immediately. You’ll also have to download Facebook’s other apps — Messenger and the like — and also register for the “Facebook Intent,” an under-the-hood mechanism that makes Android work.

From there, you’ll be able to access all of the key features that come with Facebook’s new Android skin, including Cover Feed and Chat Heads, the persistent messaging application that flows throughout apps across the entire phone.

Sadly, only a handful of devices will be supported at launch. The HTC One, HTC One X, Samsung Galaxy S3, Samsung Galaxy S4 (in the future) and the Galaxy Note 2. Facebook plans to have more devices supported, but for now only these few are capable of being upgraded.

Home is designed to run on Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean versions of Android, Facebook said.

A separate program will allow device makers to incorporate Facebook Home right out of the box.

The first two partners are HTC (as we reported last year), as well as carrier AT&T. Their collaboration — a phone called the HTC First — comes in four colors (ooh, aah). It’ll be released on April 12 for $100.

The company plans to update “Home” on a monthly release cycle, adding new features to install regularly.

So, it’s not ready for all Android lovers, but in Facebook’s version of the mobile future, it will be.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald