HTC First review: a Facebook phone that's pure Google at heart
7 January 2014
Summary: The HTC First is going to be best-known as the pilot "Facebook Phone," shipping with the all-new Facebook Home software running in lieu of a traditional Android phone skin. That would be enough to make it notable, but the First has a couple of other things going for it, things that lots of people have been waiting for in an Android phone.
Pros: You can use it one-handed, Great display, Stock Android
Cons: Camera is sub-par, Facebook Home feels unfinished, Not super fast
Conclusion: As the most wholly realised example of Facebook integration on a mobile device, we’re fans of the HTC First. The user experience really is an original take on Android and should appeal to anyone who checks their favourite social network more than once or twice a day. On the other hand, some might find it’s lack of flexibility stifling, detracting from what makes Android such a great OS in the first place.
Pros: Beautiful, simple design, Great screen, Unique UI
Cons: No removable memory/battery, Mediocre battery life, Lacklustre camera
HTC First – how does the first official Facebook Home device fare
5 July 2013
Conclusion: The HTC First is an AT&T exclusive in the US , going for $0.99 with a two year contract, which makes it an attractive choice for practically anyone who wants an affordable yet relatively powerful and sturdy handset with 4G LTE – seeing as even grandmothers nowadays use Facebook, I have no doubt there is a large user base for the device.
Summary: Unlike Samsung's Galaxy S 4, which relies on software features ; or HTC's One, which banks so much onto its hardware ; or even Apple's iPhone 5, which hopes you'll like a combination of the two, the HTC First is just about as mediocre a phone as you can find on the market today. It's not built to go up against any of those devices I just mentioned, which is why it never should have been priced anywhere near them.
Pros: Thin and light frame; 4.3-inch display size is perfect; stock Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
Cons: Lackluster camera; bland hardware design; mediocre battery life.
Conclusion: "Facebook phone" should be considered a misnomer for the HTC First. In reality, it's just another Android phone that runs a different kind of software. The HTC First can disable Home and become a stock, though not current, version of Android that is just as capable as other devices of its ilk. This is definitely a phone that showcases the best Facebook has to offer to smartphones, but it is not limited to that set-up thankfully.
Conclusion: Is the HTC First the most impressive and amazing phone to ever pass through our hands? Not by a long shot. Is it the most memorable? Hardly. But neither of those two things make it a bad device.
Pros: Great build quality and simple design, Exceptional performance, Gorgeous display, It comes with stock Android 4.1.2, Above par call quality and network performance
Cons: Camera performance is mediocre, Non-removable battery, no storage options, Facebook Home is buggy, causes performance issues, Non-traditional microUSB port placement, Mild specifications with some performance hiccups
Conclusion: There's a lot more to the HTC First than Facebook Home. With solid build quality, minimalist looks, pocket-friendly size, and capable hardware, the handset is arguably the most appealing mid-range Android smartphone at the moment. We were most surprised by seeing an unmodified Android OS on the device out of the box. It is the only such option available in the US at the moment, this side of a Google Nexus device.
Pros: Quad-band GSM and quad-band 3G support, Tri-band LTE network support, 4.3" 16M-color Super LCD capacitive touchscreen with HD resolution (720 x 1280 pixels); Gorilla glass, Unmodified Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean with Facebook Home UI preinstalled, 1.4 GHz dual-core Krait CPU, Qualcomm MSM8930 Snapdragon 400 chipset, 1 GB of RAM and 16GB of built-in storage, 5 MP autofocus camera with LED flash; face detection and geotagging, 1080p and 720p video recording @ 30fps, 1.6MP ...
Cons: Only 12GB of available storage and no option to expand, Battery is not user-replaceable, Only available on AT&T for the time being, 5MP camera is not exactly cutting edge these days