Facebook is adding a rather redundant version of Chat Heads to its Facebook 6.0 iOS update, allowing users to talk anywhere inside the app. This means Chat Heads will not pop up on the home-screen or in any other app.
This may change however, with Facebook and Apple in negotiations currently surrounding Facebook Home. Unlike Android, which is an open source platform allowing developers to redesign the UI, iOS is closed and cannot be built upon or around.
Facebook Home may be the first app to reinvent Apple’s classical lock and home screen look, although we suspect Apple will keep tight restrictions. This would be the first accepted app integrated into the iOS lock screen.
Chat Heads cannot function outside of Facebook applications either, because iOS does not allow developers to put their app over the operating system, as Android does. This means Chat Heads becomes more redundant until Apple changes restrictions.
Apple may be worried about the impact Facebook Home will have on Android, especially considering Android now runs over 70% of all smartphones worldwide. Cupertino may see opening the operating system a little to developers as a way to lure them back in.
Cover Feed will be a hard tool to implement into iOS, as will properly functioning Chat Heads. It would require a combined effort between Facebook and Apple, something we cannot see happening any time soon.
With iOS7 around the corner, we may see Apple do something with applications, developers and user interface, all of which may help developers make Apple experience even better and tailored to a certain network.
Facebook is also talking with Windows executives about adding Facebook Home to Windows Phone. No word yet on BlackBerry, unsurprisingly. This is still a report and should be taken with a grain of salt, but we cannot see why the mobile software companies would not want Facebook to add Home.