Finally got a Hands-On with the HTC First.

And I think it's going to be a sales flop. The irony? I loved the device. I loved the design, the feel of it in my hand, the display (size, resolution, colors), and how smoothly the UI worked from top to bottom. But if the selling point is Facebook, it's not going to sell. Why? The default launcher for in-store demonstrations is not Facebook Home. Don't get me wrong: Trebuchet is a fine launcher. It's smooth and attractive (though I'm not a fan of most stock icons). But your average user is going to take one look at it, and ask, "Where's all the Facebook stuff?"

Even if the salesperson is well-versed in Facebook Home, how it works, and its advantages (something that I frankly do not remotely expect given the level of expertise of every AT&T Wireless salesperson I have yet met), just describing it to the user isn't going to have the same impact as demoing a nice, feature-complete version of an HTC One, GN2 or GS4. Facebook screwed the pooch by not having a proper demo version of Home that would work without a signed-in account. And I'm calling it now: that is going to cost the HTC First its commercial viability. Such a shame. And I can just hear Samsung and HTC execs now, taking this as more evidence that "the market has spoken" in favor of large screens. Bummer.