UPDATED 07:52 EST / APRIL 05 2013


Facebook’s Android Takeover Coming Next Week

In today’s mobile and social news roundup: Facebook Home coming on April 12; Verizon open to dropping contracts; T-Mobile starts iPhone 5 pre-orders; and iMessage too secured for tapping.

Facebook Home Coming On April 12

Facebook revealed its latest mobile plans yesterday.  Though most expected either a real Facebook phone or a Facebook mobile OS, the social media giant instead revealed an Android launcher – essentially a program that turns your Android devices Facebook-centric.

Facebook Home features Chat Heads, Notifications, and an App Launcher.  The Facebook Home will be available for download on Google Play for HTC One, One X, Galaxy SIII, Galaxy Note II on April 12 or you can buy the HTC First, the first Android device that comes pre-installed with Facebook Home, on AT&T for $99, also coming on the 12th.  The great thing about Facebook Home is that you have the option of trying it out for a short time, instead of being stuck with it forever.

According to a poll from CNET, 78 percent of respondents said that they are not even interested in trying Facebook Home, 4 percent can’t wait to try it, 10 percent may try it, 6 percent are still waiting for feedback before they try it, while one percent is still not sure about Facebook Home.  You need to vote to see the result of the poll.

If you’re wondering why people aren’t interested in trying it out, check out Facebook Home: Good For Dumb F*cks, But Not For The Rest Of Us.

Verizon Open to Dropping Contracts

Verizon is willing to follow T-Mobile’s no contract initiatives if the company sees that there is a high demand for it.  According to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam, he is “delighted when he sees something different is being tried out”, and so the company is willing to step up if its subscribers demand the same offerings as T-Mobile’s.

T-Mobile eliminated two-year contract plans and revealed flexible data pans as well as cheap installment plans for devices.  Though some argued that this will make owning smartphones more expensive, based on price comparisons, T-Mobile still offers the cheapest iPhone 5 in the market.

T-Mobile Starts Taking iPhone 5 Pre-orders

The iPhone 5 is finally coming to T-Mobile and it comes at an affordable price.  Starting today, you can now pre-order a black or white 16GB iPhone 5 for a down payment of $99.99 and $20 per month for the next 24 months.  As for the 32GB variant, the down payment is $199.99 and the 64GB goes for $299.99, and both fall under the same installment plan of $20 a month for the next two years.

The iPhone 5 will be available in T-Mobile stores on April 12.

iMessage Too Secured for Tapping

When Apple introduced the iMessage in 2011, the company stated that it would use end-to-end encryption to secure the service.  For consumers, this is a great form of protecting their privacy, but for investigators, it has become a nightmare.

The Drug Enforcement Administration stated in a filing that because of the encryption used in iMessage, “it is impossible to intercept iMessages between two Apple devices” even with a court order approved by a federal judge.  FBI director Robert Mueller is pushing for “some form of legislation,” and quietly asked for web companies not to oppose a new law that would allow extensive wiretapping.

For now, as long as iMessage is still safe from the government’s prying eyes, enjoy having secured conversations with your cronies.

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