I haven’t tried it — I can’t, somehow they managed to make the thing incompatible on Nexus phones — but even if I could I would keep my distance given that it’s earned an average of 2.2 stars on Google Play. Wild guess here but I bet there has never been, nor will there ever be, an app that was downloaded half a million times in five days with the majority of its users who voted giving it one star. Never seen anything like this:


Some speculate that Google’s Android crowd just loves to beat up on Facebook. Others say it’s a crappy app, not unlike the regular Facebook Android app, that drains your battery and doesn’t let you use your widgets and that it truly deserves such a low rating. Others say give it time, let them polish it up a bit, and some others say that the app is intended for teens, not the average user who may have been more likely to install this just because of the headlines it made. Then there’s Microsoft which asks why use this garbage, yet another Android skin, when you can get the real thing integrated perfectly on Windows Phone, and I bet many of you agree.

And then there’s our own Stephen who says this, something I found insightful and worth all this buildup to leave you with:

FWIW, these bad reviews may actually be bad for Windows Phone; as they continue to indicate mobile users’ reluctance to leave the inefficient, siloed experience native Android and iOS deliver. Sadly, to me, this is just another demonstration of users opposing change for the better. I just don’t understand why they can’t be enthusiastic and desiring of the improvements in integration Facebook Home and Windows Phone have to offer the same way they embraced the iPhone and Android.

Sent from Windows Mail

Unorthodox semicolon usage aside, that’s intriguing and as a WebP proponent his point resonates with me poignantly. Whether or not this new Facebook Home skin approach, also Windows Phone in general, falls under the “better” category, I do agree that in technology there is very often an opposition to change even if it is truly for the better; and it’s vexing to imagine how much farther along we’d be if that weren’t such a major and confounding obstacle.

Doug Simmons


  1. the issue here is how “In you face” home…. something that only die hard facebook fans would love.

    I feel as if people are rating the app because they don’t like facebook as much as facebook thinks they do, and not for what it actually is… a beautiful ui that works.

    also, this means nothing for wp8. wp8 integration is worlds different from home, two completely different ways of doing things. with millions of units sold and lumia’s being the top rated phones on every carrier who offers them, i’m going to say wp8 is accepted.

  2. I’ve lived my whole life in the US, so I can definitively say that all semicolon usage is unorthodox to Americans. However, they also help enable my long-winded, run-on habits; and separate items in a list from a subordinate clause.

  3. Ramon if I may attempt to contort what Stephen said, I don’t think he was knocking Windows Phone’s implementation of social integration at all, nor did he intend to draw a direct parallel between the Metro interface and Facebook Home — rather, he was suggesting that the would be better off with Facebook Home, Windows Phone and of course WebP if there weren’t this natural resistance to things that are at all foreign.

    While you may be satisfied that Windows Phone is indeed a success finally, Stephen may have meant that it would have been a much bigger hit and much more quickly were it not for this problem standing in the way of progress. He was being more abstract than what you’re saying.

    By the way Ramon: http://gs.statcounter.com/#mobile_os-ww-monthly-201301-201303-bar

  4. This really couldn’t be less about WP. When Fb home (or whatever it’s called) was introduced they basically said everything that MS said when WP7 was introduced. Beyond that, you and he are reaching.

  5. Doug rephrased exactly what I meant. I have no problem with Facebook Home. It’s the precise direction computing ecosystems need to go. Less apps, more integration. Unfortunately, Facebook Home neglects to offer the same integrated experience Windows Phone does by tying together Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Microsoft services. It’s purpose is really about extending the Facebook ecosystem by pushing Twitter and co. out of the way.

    However, Facebook Home bridging SMS with Facebook contacts a step in the right direction away from these disparate apps that completely ignore the various networks and media people use to communicate in the real world. Windows Phone does take things a step further by tying in voice calls, SMS, Facebook Chat, Skype/Messenger, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Lync. But until people realize apps are counter-productive in the real world, it’s going to be an uphill battle to make products like Windows Phone and Facebook Home more convincing than an ecosystem such as the one offered by iOS.

  6. @Stepehn, Precisley! People have become accustomed to jumping in and out of “apps”, having load times, or splash screens. Without all that they don’t feel like they are *doing* anything.
    Integrated services is lost on a lot of people.

    At least until apple does it and claims to be the first.

    • Bingo.

      The biggest early knocks on Windows Phone were:

      1) Underpowered hardware (which was irrelevant to the smoothness and response of the device)

      2) Unfair comparisons based on App Mentality.

      Many reviewers didn’t even bother with posting or getting notifications through the Me Tile, they were so conditioned by getting into and out of Apps that they missed the point completely.

      “Why, your horseless carriage is so long in the front, you’d never be able to adequately strike anything with a standard buggy whip!”

  7. So many 1-star reviews can’t be good as it reflects people’s lack of motivation to recommend the app to friends and family. I’ve never seen such an enormous amount of cash spent marketing an app. Heck I would argue that Facebook’s Home push rivals that of Call of Duty and other hardcore gaming titles. That should tell you that the data they are trying to mine from all these users are worth their weight in gold.

    The problem I see going forward for Facebook is that they have shown their hand and now Google & Samsung will take straight aim at implementing similar UI abilities to prevent Facebook’s goal of dominating user data from happening.

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