Whenever a new piece of software is due to hit the market, it invariably leaks a great deal earlier than anticipated. History has repeated itself on some of the social network’s just-announced Facebook Home for Android software, with MoDaCo managing to get its hands on a pre-release version. The Google-branded Nexus 4 is said to be one of a handful of devices compatible with this pre-release version of the launcher, which will release officially for five handsets this coming Friday, and although one or two of the features don’t appear to be working properly, it’s a very nice find.
Facebook’s efforts to expand its mobile presence has been very well documented, but while it did appear to take Zuck and his team quite a while to get the official app performing at a standard acceptable for a network of the company’s size, things have certainly seemed to kick on in the past twelve months. Since Facebook version 5.0 appeared for iOS and Android, the social network has been able to focus its attentions on other key areas, and having recently made some big alterations to the News Feed, Facebook Home looks to be the most ambitious project to date.
Whilst it is, to all intents and purposes, a custom launcher, it’s actually quite a bit more than the majority of Android launchers users will have been accustomed to. The feature-rich offering aims to bring a more engrossing social networking experience, while also deepening Facebook’s integration with the Android ecosystem. Chat Heads, for example, looks to consolidate your SMS messages and Facebook messages into one convenient, timeline-like interface, which stops you having to flit between different apps on such a frequent basis.
Although Chat Heads is a feature many will be looking forward to with the official Facebook Home, it doesn’t function at all on MoDaCo‘s pre-release version. If you are keen to try out the leaked version for yourself, it sounds as though it’ll probably be more trouble than it’s worth, and since the maximum resolution supported is capped at 1280 x 768, it’s not going to look amazing if you’ve a full HD display.
The installation process is fairly simple, there are three APKs in total to install, make sure Unknown sources is checked in Settings > Security. Also, since this is a pre-release build, therefore expect a bit of muddy spots along the way. With that said, if you can deal with a little instability, head over to MoDaCo and give it a try for yourself.
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