It's time to check out the Facebook Phone early - a full software build from the device has been leaked and it would appear that HTC is, indeed, onboard. What we're having a look at here is a full APK (application for Android) that will live inside the device code-named HTC Myst. This device has been leaked before, and according to the leak Android Police has secured, (and promises isn't an April Fools joke,) it's set to be a real oddity in the market.
Hardware: HTC Myst
The first place we'll be seeing Facebook's new software is the HTC smartphone still code-named "Myst". We'll likely see this device shown by HTC later this week with the name "Facebook Phone by HTC" or something equally appropriate. The device is being delivered as - more or less - an idea palm-sized smartphone made to compete with the size segment Apple is still king of at the moment.
• HTC Myst (code-name)
• 4.3-inch display, 720p
• AT&T 4G LTE
• 1GB RAM
• Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor (MSM8960) (same as Galaxy S III)
• 5 megapixel camera on back
• 1.6 megapixel camera on front
• Sense UI 4.5 (Facebook Home modifications onboard)
• Bluetooth 4.0
• Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean
Sound like the mid-range winner for you? Will Facebook offer this device for sale straight from their site? That might be a winning situation - something like Google Play does with the Google Nexus smartphone and tablet lineup?
Facebook Home App
Facebook Home will be essentially a Home Screen Replacement app. If you're working with Android on your smartphone, you're able to download a variety of Home Screen Replacement apps that will allow you to work with a user interface that's totally different from what you're working with right out of the box. Here with Facebook Home, it would seem that everything will be just a bit different - from your lockscreen down to your settings.
Some interesting bits and pieces discovered in the Facebook Home APK thus far:
• TouchWiz permissions (for future Samsung smart devices)
• Icon changes (simple differences making Android look more "Facebook-like")
• Google button (indicating Facebook's willingness to use Google - not just Bing)
• Chat Heads - a new way this user interface handles your contacts
• Facebook Apps out-of-box integration
Given what we're seeing here in this, effectively a full leak of Facebook's intentions, it would appear that the HTC Myst will be a device that works with Facebook Home, one of the first (or only) Facebook Phones on the market. Otherwise it may be that Facebook releases Facebook Home as a stand-alone app you can download yourself for your own device - wouldn't that be fabulous?
The Full Story
We'll be live in-effect at the Facebook event later this week - stay tuned to SlashGear for the big show, starting Thursday, April 4th at 10AM PST! Make sure you have a peek at our Facebook tag portal until then and keep up to date on all things Facebook coming your way!