Open Source Subnet An independent Open Source community View more

How Facebook developers screwed up Facebook Home

Had the Facebook developers working on the Android app been familiar with Android, maybe Facebook Home would have been more successful.

Facebook Home, the product of Facebook's work to put its social network at the front of the Android mobile operating system, was reportedly built by a team of developers who were not familiar with Android.

TechCrunch reported today that "some of the Facebookers who built and tested Home normally carry iPhones." That explains why Facebook Home has been so poorly received among Android users, many of whom have criticized changes to important Android features like widgets, docks, and app folders that were buried beneath the Facebook Home interface.

The community of native iOS users at Facebook is partially the fault of the company's management, which has issued iPhones to its employees for years. However, the company apparently tried to diversify its developers' mobile trends sometime last year, TechCrunch reported last November. Facebook has been hanging posters around the campus encouraging employees to "droidfood," a play on the term "eat your own dogfood," which means to use the technology you're working on.

While receiving criticism, Facebook Home has also been commercially stale, attracting just 1 million downloads in its first month on the market. That figure is largely seen as a disappointment when compared to the Instagram for Android app, which reached 1 million downloads in its first day on the market and 5 million in less than a week.

Meanwhile, the HTC First, the only smartphone that came with Facebook Home pre-installed, has been reportedly discontinued by AT&T, according to Boy Genius Report.

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on topics that are top of mind.
Must read: 10 new UI features coming to Windows 10