SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— HTC’s Facebook phone received a lot of press when it was first announced. But, so far the hype has not translated to sales.

BGR, a popular tech blog, is speculating that AT&T is set to pull the plug on the HTC First smartphone, which has only been out for a month.

One clue to the speculation is that AT&T has reduced the price of the phone, as a promotion, to 99 cents. When a $200 phone is being sold for that low, it is usually an indication that the phone is not flying off the shelf, especially when it’s only been on the market for a few weeks.

Another problem that is likely factoring into the lack of this phone’s sales is that you can download the Facebook Home software and put it on existing Android phones. The number of downloads have not been particularly high and we don’t even know what the installation rate has been.

To be honest, I wasn’t all that interested in trying it out and I didn’t even bother installing it on my Samsung phone. Even though I’m usually the first guy to try almost anything I decided that I don’t need it.

There are plenty of ways to access Facebook on just about all smartphones. I think the question is, do you really need Facebook in your face? It is one thing to have the app and run it, but it is another to have a phone built around it.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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