The HTC First might be launching on AT&T, but that doesn't mean this built-for-Facebook device is going to be limited to the US: we just learned it will eventually arrive in Europe too, on Orange and the UK's EE network. Unfortunately, whereas AT&T came armed with pricing and availability details ($100 on April 12th), we still have no idea when, exactly, the phone will hit these other carriers. If you want to try before you buy, of course, you should be able to download the Facebook Home skin through Google Play pretty soon.
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EE, EXCLUSIVE UK LAUNCH PARTNER FOR THE FIRST SMARTPHONE TO FEATURE 'HOME' BY FACEBOOK –
THE 'HTC FIRST'
EE is the exclusive UK launch partner for the first smartphone with an entirely new Facebook experience, called Home, on the 'HTC First'
The HTC First will be exclusively available this summer on EE's superfast 4GEE service, with details on pricing and availability to be announced in due course
4th April 2013. London. EE, the UK's most advanced digital communications company, has partnered with HTC and Facebook to be the exclusive UK launch partner for the HTC First, the first superfast 4GEE smartphone to feature the new integrated Facebook experience, Home.
The HTC First, featuring Home by Facebook, allows customers to receive friends' updates directly on to their home screen. Customers will also be able to share photos, interact with friends and chat instantaneously, all through the most immersive mobile Facebook experience, which will be enhanced by EE's superfast 4G network.
The HTC First will be available exclusively in the UK on EE 4GEE plans, providing customers with download speeds approximately five times faster than 3G - so they enjoy an optimised Facebook experience. Customers will be able to take out the handset with a 4GEE phone plan this summer, via the EE online shop, EE telesales and EE retail stores.
Pippa Dunn, Chief Marketing Officer, EE, said: "We're proud to have been chosen by Facebook and HTC to be their UK launch partner for the HTC First. In combining our unique superfast network with the latest integrated Facebook experience, customers will constantly be at the centre of conversations with their friends."
"With Home enabled out of the box, you'll be able to get everyone's latest updates and messages right on your home screen," said Dan Rose, Vice President of Partnerships at Facebook.
Peter Chou, CEO HTC said: "Along with our partners and fellow innovators-EE in the UK-we anticipate excitement from customers when the HTC First becomes available, putting a user's friends and family at the centre of their mobile experience."
Home is designed around a customer's friends and when combined with 4GEE it puts them at the centre of their phone:
· Cover Feed: A constant stream of photos and updates from friends that are always available at a glance. Swipe through to see more and interact with friends by liking, commenting, and sharing right from the Cover Feed
· Notifications: Thanks to Home's deep integration with Android, notifications from apps appear alongside updates from friends right on the home screen
· Chat Heads: Keep chatting with Facebook contacts even when using other apps. Reply right from chat heads, or move them around if you're not ready to respond, and send SMS and Facebook messages from the same place
· App Launcher: Set favourite apps and access them directly through Home
In addition to superfast speeds and EE services, HTC First customers with a 4GEE phone plan will also benefit from:
· EE Film – the only service in the UK which combines 2 for 1 cinema ticketing, listings, trailers and digital film downloads in one place
· A discount of £5 per month on EE superfast Fibre Broadband – so they can get blistering speeds at home and on the move
· Fast track customer service by dialing '33' from their handset
· Clone Phone Lite – giving people free storage to back up the content that matters most
4G from EE, the first and only 4G network in the UK, currently covers the homes and businesses of 50% of the UK population. Further to the 50 towns and cities 4GEE is already live in now, EE has also committed to switching on at least 30 more by June, bringing the total to 80 towns and cities by the summer.
For further information on the HTC First, including full details of EE's price plans when available – please register at http://www.ee.co.uk/facebook