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Your Guide to Facebook Home

Just when I thought Facebook was done for a while with site updates, acquisitions, etc., Zuckerberg comes along channeling Steve Jobs with “wait, there’s just one more thing..” However, it’s not always one thing is it Zuckerberg? Last Thursday, I watched live, along with several other curious folks, wondering if indeed all those Facebook phone rumors were true. While there is no phone per se, I kinda had a feeling Zuckerberg would be heading into the mobile world.

So what exactly is Zuckerberg up to now?

Last Thursday’s announcement was all about “Facebook Home.” It is a unique operating system designed just for Android phones (for now) and only a few models. It ultimately represents how Facebook wants to appear on your Android device if you’ll let it. At the Facebook event, Zuckerberg referred to Home as “putting people first instead of apps.”

Facebook Home is about an experience vs an OS. It is a new home screen and app launch interface for your Android phone that gives you all the Facebook you could ever want – notifications, news feed posts, and messages with an overall phone experience. So if you love Facebook, you just might love Facebook Home.

If you decide to install Facebook Home (launching April 12th), your phone’s lock and home screen will default to something called a “cover feed.” This cover feed is a stream from your news feed putting direct focus on what your friends are sharing live and in the moment – status updates, photos, etc. It’ll all be on your phone and update in the moment. The cover feed will allow you to browse Facebook as you would if you were in the Facebook app itself. You will be able to like, comment, and share directly from the cover feed. If you miss an update, Facebook has you covered with notifications. The OS will push out notifications that matter to you. You can choose when to view them – now or later with a swipe of a finger.

The Facebook event also introduced a new feature called “chat heads.” Chat heads allow you to respond to any text message within any app as well as Facebook messages. These chat head messages can also be moved around the screen for easier access or out of the way if you’re reading an article and want to respond later.

The beauty of Facebook Home is that it is currently ad free and great for Facebook lovers. However, don’t be surprised if sponsored stories and promoted posts find their way into your news feed.

Facebook Home will be launching on April 12th for a few select Android phones in the Google Play store. If you want the full experience, or what some are calling the “Facebook Phone,” you can go out and purchase the HTC First which is pre-loaded with the Facebook Home software.

What do you think about Facebook Home? Will you be downloading the new software or using Facebook the old fashioned way via the app? Let us know in the comments below.

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