Last week, Mark Zucker­berg announced a new Face­book mobile expe­ri­ence dubbed “Face­book Home”. It’s not an OS or an app but seems to fall some­where in the middle. It will run on select Android devices start­ing April 12th and will be opti­mized for an exclu­sive AT&T device, the HTC First, which can be pre-ordered now and will be released on the 12th as well.

Face­book Home essen­tially replaces your Android home screen with full screen images from your news feed. This is the “Cover Feed”. You can flick through these aesthet­i­cally pleas­ing (assum­ing what you follow is pretty) posts and see captions with trans­par­ent back­grounds directly on the top of the post.

Facebook Cover Feed

Face­book Messen­ger also has a new form – “chat heads” – little circles that can be moved around your phone’s display which expand into a message UI that includes Face­book and SMS chat. For more infor­ma­tion visit Face­book Home’s dedi­cated page.

What do these announce­ments mean for media folk?

Face­book Home is another step towards full immer­sion of users into the Face­book world. Recent devel­op­ments in Face­book Search and Promoted Posts have created oppor­tu­ni­ties to deliver adver­tiser impres­sions. In Facebook’s new post sizes, adver­tis­ers could conceiv­ably serve a full mobile screen takeover to a Face­book user that has installed Home on their device. Face­book also plans to develop Home for tablets which leads us to wonder if there will be an announce­ment about a Chrome app or other desktop formats that simi­larly immerse users in a Face­book UI on other devices.

It will be inter­est­ing to see how many users want to replace a picture of their daugh­ter on their home screen with their friend’s cats or uncle on his 5th vaca­tion to the Bahamas this year. Or more impor­tantly, how far Face­book will allow adver­tis­ers to go in order to capi­tal­ize on Facebook’s increas­ing share of user atten­tion and screen real estate; full mobile screen takeover adver­tise­ments may be a bit much for users.

by Omri Levin, Digital Media Manager

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