Monday, April 15, 2013

Facebook Home - To use or not to use, that is the question.

Well, I have to say that for the first time I am both impressed and happy with something that was produced by Facebook. They have truly produced a fantastic set of apps that show off what Facebook has to offer. With that being said, I couldn't stand having it on my phone for more than an hour before I uninstalled it to get back to my default launcher.

If the only thing I used my phone for was Facebook, and I mean strictly Facebook then this would be perfect. As soon as you turn your phone's screen on it brings you to Facebook Home which is essentially an endless slideshow of your newsfeed. It is beautiful and very smooth and perhaps most importantly, very simple to use. If you want to message someone, you swipe your profile ball to the left, if you want to visit your most recent app, you swipe right, and if you need any of the other apps you swipe up and first it will give you a selection of your most favorite apps. You can also swipe that to the right(or left, depending on how you think about it) and you will see all of the apps you have installed on your phone.

The Good:

Like I said before, if you use your phone exclusively for Facebook then you will fall in love with Facebook Home. The way it handles messaging is actually pretty great and attractive, I found myself trying to engage in Facebook messaging conversations just so I could use it more. Unfortunately, at the moment it isn't available for most phones which is what I attribute its bugginess on my Nexus 4 to but if you're one of the lucky few who has a supported device and you're an avid Facebook user, I highly suggest you give it a try. You may find that it's all that you've ever wanted out of your phone.

The Bad:

I said this before, also; if you're not using your phone just for Facebook you may find that this is going to get in the way of using your phone in the way that it was intended. You know, as a phone? If you want to make a phone call, you have to swipe up to go to your apps and then go searching for the dialer in the app drawer.  Not only is that inconvenient under normal circumstances, that's downright abysmal if you have some sort of emergency! It's also surprisingly difficult to get back to the normal Facebook app. There isn't a shortcut to it somewhere, it's just hanging out in the app drawer with the rest of your apps. After having to navigate through the app drawer a few times just to send a simple text message I had enough and had to uninstall the app.

Conclusion: 

You may say I didn't give it a fair chance or take the time to figure out how to use it but I tried. I really wanted to like it because I like how simple and clean and beautiful it is when you're using it. The problem is, though, that Facebook isn't the only app on my phone! I use my phone primarily as a communication device across a multitude of mediums and Facebook, while one of those is not the only one. I know I'm not alone in this so I feel comfortable in saying that when it's all said and done this isn't a very good app. If it was tweaked, just a little to make things other than Facebook easier to access and use then it would probably be my new launcher but it's just not there yet. For now, it's going to have to be reserved for the hardcore Facebookers who don't mind a little extra work to get to their other apps to have a fantastic mobile Facebook experience.

For users who don't have a supported device but want to try it out, check out this MoDoCo thread:
http://www.modaco.com/topic/361924-facebook-home-download-including-patched-apk-version/
If you're lucky enough to have a supported device then just click this link to the Google Play Store

Have you tried Facebook Home, yet? If so, what do you think? Do you agree with my assessment that it's not for the average user? Start a discussion in the comment section below or on the original post on Facebook or Google+.