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All talk of a Facebook Phone aside, at its core the HTC First is an Android 4.1: Jelly Bean device, and therefore gets its apps from the Google Play Store.
Of course, it does manage its apps differently, using those app trays we talked about and not letting you deploy widgets. But if you get sick of that, you can just use the regular old Android home screen.
And as we've said, the HTC First is a dual-core device. In day-to-day use you'd be hard pressed to notice that this isn't the latest tech. Going from screen to screen and using basic apps, the First performs admirably. High end games, however, are what push it over the edge.
Graphically intense titles like Asphalt 7 and Modern Combat 4 had noticeably longer load times than on a quad-core devices, such as the HTC One X+ or the Galaxy S3. But during general gameplay, the First handled the action surprisingly well. However, when things got really hectic, with lots of cars or soldiers on the screen, there were drops in frame rate and some stuttering. We'd call it playable, but not an optimal experience.
Lower end titles like Angry Birds and Cut the Rope didn't give the First any trouble. This isn't a gamer's phone, but it's capable, and plays those time-passing ninety-nine cent titles just fine.
It's an Android phone remember? So Google Maps is the mapping and navigation service of choice here.
Google Maps has always been number one in our hearts for navigation, but it's come a long way over the years. It now offers 3D rendering of buildings, and even interior mappings of popular places.
It also offers turn-by-turn navigation, which managed to keep up with us as we drove around the city.
While neither AT&T nor HTC have done any fooling with good old Android 4.1, AT&T has given the First its typical injection of most useless apps.
My AT&T, which lets you check your remaining minutes and billing cycle, and AT&T Smart Wi-Fi, which helps you find mobile hotspots provided by the carrier, aren't bad, but the rest are pretty easy to ignore.
The always baffling AT&T Navigator is here; baffling that it charges for mapping service that's inferior to the free Google Maps.
However, in an extremely rare move, these apps can actually be uninstalled! This is not the case on even some of the HTC's best devices, like the HTC One. Looks like Facebook might have exercised some real muscle here, and we're happy to see it.
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