HTC First, aka Facebook Phone, Now Costs 99 Cents

Speaking of cheap phones, the Facebook Home-equipped HTC First has undergone a major (some say desperate) price slash. What was once sold for $99.99 with a two year contract with AT&T is now available for just 99 cent. Yes, that is a 99 percent discount and it still has the two-year agreement.

The AT&T online store has made it even look worse, as it displayed HTC First’s original price ($350.99) before subtracting it by $350. Sure it looks great that more people would be enticed into buying a 4G phone with built-in Facebook Home, but the possibility of future Facebook Phones appear to be dim.

You see, Apple’s iPhone and premium Android handsets like Samsung Galaxy S phones normally do not slash their prices until newer versions are announced or shipped from the factories. The iPhone 4S, for instance, for sells for $99 (with a two-year contract) since the arrival of the iPhone 5. The still-popular Samsung Galaxy S3, meanwhile, now sells for $99 after the Samsung Galaxy S4 came along. A 99-percent discount for HTC First after only a month of availability, and without an announcement of future handsets, sounds grim.

While it may sounds unfortunate for Facebook Home, representatives of the popular social media service tell Mashable that the price slash is actually a good thing.

“We think this is a good move by AT&T,” the reps say. So much so, Facebook even promoted the deal on Facebook Mobile’s page.

Meanwhile, AT&T spokespersons tell Mashable that its current promotion is not unusual. “We do promotions like this all the time,” the carrier’s reps say, citing that the Nokia Lumia 920 is currently for free (you just have to pay the two-year contract). AT&T remains mum on how long this promo would last.

HTC also echoes AT&T’s statement. “Promotional pricing is common in the mobile industry,” the maker of HTC First tells Mashable. “AT&T does promotions like this all the time. HTC doesn’t comment on sales outside of our official financial announcements.”

Facebook Home can still be downloaded for free, just as long as you have the compatible Android smartphone. It has been reported that at least half a million users have downloaded the launcher so far.

Source: AT&T, via Mashable

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