Five Reasons Facebook Home Will Not Hit the Mainstream

Image credit: Google.com
So the Facebook Phone, huh? Well, not exactly, more like the Facebook Android launcher. Pretty lame if you ask me. As you must have heard, Zuckerberg announced Facebook Home, which will come preinstalled on an HTC middle of the line phone called the HTC First. The Android launcher, yes, that is all it really is, will also be available for “select devices” on Google Play.

“Great,” I thought, “I will install it on my Galaxy Note.” Nope, not available. “OK, no problem. Will just fire up the old Nexus 7.” Sorry, it did not make the cut of “select devices.” Once again, lame.

Anyway, after some downloading of hacked APKs, I was able to install Facebook Home on my Nexus 7. So was it horrible? Did I hate everything about it? Nope, quite the contrary. Facebook Home is a super interesting concept that is actually designed very well and will appeal to a whole lot of people. But Zuckerberg doesn’t care about a “Whole lot of people.” He only cares about “All people” and sorry to burst your bubble Zuck, but there is slim chance anyone above the age of 21 will be installing this thing. Harsh, I know, but this was not designed for the mainstream. Here are five reasons why:

5 Privacy is Dead? Well, I Still Have My Phone, Right?

Many geeks will use Facebook Home, MANY. However, the billion people on Facebook are starting to understand that their privacy, as they knew it, is now gone. At least on the Web. When it comes to the mobile phone that has the ability to track your every move, picture, connection and precise location, many people still err on the side of caution. The thought of letting Facebook collect and use all that data on a regular basis? Well, that scares me, I can’t even imagine how my mom would feel about it, assuming of course she even heard of Facebook Home, which she has not…

4 Wait, What? No iOS Support, Now or Ever?

Ok, this is not Zuckerberg’s fault, but in today’s mobile landscape, you can’t really expect to release a product, any product, with only Android in mind. Yes, Android is the most dominant player right now, but to ignore Apple is just plain stupid. Now, I get it, Apple wont allow Facebook to hijack its home screen so I say, figure out another way but to not offer something on iOS, is mobile suicide.

3 We Are Getting Ahead of Ourselves Here…

You see, before people realize the camera is hidden in Facebook Home, they need to install Facebook Home and quite frankly, I am not seeing it. Facebook is great for catching up with friends—ok, not great—it gets the job done. But, let’s be honest, between all the like requests, the addition of people to groups without their consent, the constant stream of cat pics and the proud parents sharing 400 child photos a day, it is getting kind of old. But even if you enjoy that sort of thing, do you really want it as the home screen of your phone? I’ll pass, thank you very much.

2 Wait, Where Did My Camera Go?

How, may I ask, did Facebook really release a product that is supposed to offer the ultimate mobile experience with no quick access to the camera? Yes, you have access to your apps in which the camera is located, but again, remember who we are talking about here. Facebook Home gives you easy and quick access to your Facebook feed along with a few other options that are one click/tap away. Your camera is not one of those options and that is a problem.

1 A Launcher? What’s That?

If you take a look at the usage patterns of iOS vs Android, you will notice something very interesting. While Android has significantly more users, iOS has much more web browsing being done from the iPhone. Why is that? Well, if you ask me, it’s because most Android users use their phones as a calling/texting machine, aka, feature phone. Most Android users buy their phones because they cost them less than $100 and why not? All the cool kids are doing it. Replacing the launcher and home screen? Sorry, that is where moms and dads draw their line.

Hillel Fuld is Senior Evangelist at inner-active.com, a leading player in the mobile app monetization space. In addition, Hillel contributes to various leading online publications including The Huffington Post, Mashable, Gigaom, Business Insider and more. You can find him on Twitter as @Hilzfuld.

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