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HTC First

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 HTC First Available now
4th April 2013

Update: due to poor sales in the US, the launch of this handset has been cancelled in many other regions including the UK.

Let's get to the point. If you live and breathe Facebook and wait for every update from your friends with breathless anticipation, then the HTC First may well be the phone you are looking for. Running Facebook's new "Home" app, the First offers a completely immersive Facebook experience which effectively replaces the underlying Android platform.

Of course, if you don't like Facebook then this device is supremely pointless and should be given a wide berth. However, there are probably enough die-hard Facebook fans around to make this a worthwhile punt for HTC.

We won't go into much detail about Home except to say that the Facebook stuff starts on the lock screen and seems to go all the way through. It sounds either fantastic or horrific, and to be honest we'd probably side with the latter.

As for the phone. Well, it's a pretty capable device with a dual-core 1.4GHz CPU with 1GB of RAM and 16GB of non-expandable onboard storage, a 4.3" 720 x 1280 pixel display, a 5 megapixel camera on the back plus a 1.6 megapixel unit on the front, NFC support, LTE (4G) data and all the usual features such as GPS, GLONASS, WiFi and Bluetooth. There's a reasonably large 2000 mAh battery which should mean that you can do whatever Facebookers do for a reasonably long time.

The phone isn't really much of a looker, and HTC haven't put their logo on the front for some reason which makes it look anonymously bland. There are some different colours available it seems, but is nowhere near as desirable as the HTC One  HTC First which also runs the Facebook Home app if you want it to.

AT&T in the US will have the HTC First from April 12th, Orange France and EE in the UK will also have the First at some point during the summer. No guidance was given on price, but we would think that the HTC First would retail for about €400 SIM-free.

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HTC First at a glance

Available:

Q2/Q3 2013

Network:

GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900

UMTS 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100

LTE 850 / 1900

Data:

GPRS + EDGE + UMTS (3G) + HSPA +
LTE + WiFi

Screen:

4.3" 720 x 1280 pixels

Camera:

5 megapixels (main)

1.6 megapixels (sub)

Size:

Medium smartphone

126 x 65mm (other details unknown)

Bluetooth:

Yes (4.0)

Internal memory:

16GB

Memory card:

None

CPU:

1.4GHz dual-core

RAM:

1GB

Java:

Optional

GPS:

Yes (plus GLONASS)

OS:

Android 4.1

Battery life:

Not specified (2000 mAh cell)

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