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Facebook Home no more intrusive than an app, Facebook says

The social network's new skin for Android won't violate your privacy any more than normal Facebook.

Facebook Home -- the social network's take on a home screen for your Android blower -- makes your social life the focus of your phone, but isn't that a little intrusive? Not so, according to Facebook.

The billion-strong social network claims Facebook Home doesn't alter any of your privacy settings, and that your controls work exactly the same as if you were interacting with friends through a browser or using the Facebook app. You can even switch it off, if you get a bit tired of your pals popping up every five minutes while you're trying to do something else on your mobile.

Facebook posted the response to privacy concerns in a blog post. Home will see your location, but then the Facebook app already does just that. Or you can turn off location services altogether. It will also collect information on notifications from apps on your phone, such as which app is generating them, but not the content of the alert itself. For example, it might know you've launched a maps app, but not where you searched for, or anything else you did with it open.

What if you buy that brand spanking new HTC First, but then find Facebook Home isn't for you? HTC has confirmed to The Verge that if you disable Home, the First will run stock Android, with no HTC Sense UI in sight.

The HTC First will land in the UK on EE's 4G service. Which could mean a sky-high price for what is a distinctly middle-of-the-road handset. Of course it might reach other networks at some point, but so far it's only been announced for EE.

Are you excited about HTC Home? Or do you not want your friends' faces crowding out your phone every five minutes? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page.