HTC First Europe launch indefinitely delayed due to poor reception in US
The first true Facebook phone – the HTC First – hasn't been doing too well in the US, so Facebook has decided to delay the phone's launch across Europe until they can improve the custom Facebook Home launcher.
Facebook has confirmed that the original summer-time launch of the HTC First in Europe has been cancelled, for now. Wireless carriers EE and Orange have been told to not put units on shelves until further notice.
This decision is, of course, based on negative feedback and poor market response in US markets. Facebook will work on making their custom launcher Facebook Home substantially better before adding support for new devices.
Initial reviews for Facebook Home criticize its lack of support for widgets, app folders, and for being "rigid" in nature, lacking the most basic of customization options. As of writing, Facebook Home has an average rating of 2.3 out of 5 on the Play Store, with a vast majority of user reviews giving it the lowest possible rating – 1 star.
Facebook's full statement:
Following customer feedback, Facebook has decided to focus on adding new customization features to Facebook Home over the coming months. While they are working to make a better Facebook Home experience, they have recommended holding off launching the HTC First in the UK, and so we will shortly be contacting those who registered their interest with us to let them know of this decision. Rest assured, we remain committed to bringing our customers the latest mobile experiences, and we will continue to build on our strong relationship with Facebook so as to offer customers new opportunities in the future.
The HTC First was initially available for $99 before its price was slashed to just 99 cents within a few weeks. The phone has now been discontinued on AT&T in the US.