A rather excellent article in BusinessInsider tipped off the whole topic of why Facebook created Home. The answer is predictable for sure, but no less interesting.

First, it helps to start here with the actual article, written by the excellent Jim Edwards. In it he says

It’s not clear whether [Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg] is saying “we used to open the Facebook app maybe 10 to 15 times,” or “we users open the Facebook app,” or some other slip of the tongue. But it doesn’t matter: The point is that Zuckerberg is concerned that Facebook engagement is only 15%, maximum, of users’ mobile phone use.

screensFacebook is acknowledging – in effect – that the typical user has too many apps, and that, in order for Facebook to gain more use and therefore keep the price of its ad inventory up, it must initiate engagement immediately.

Like, at start-up-immediate.

A quick perusal of the first 2 of 7 screens of my personal iPhone (at right) bears this out. Only I among my friends is OCD enough to prioritize and organize my apps so that the most-used are ganged up on the first 2 pages. Facebook knows this, and also knows how its bread is buttered.

And Facebook Home is their way of doing something about it.

It will be truly interesting to see which other mega-social services attempt the same tactic…or whether Apple will put iTunes on its home page in some future version of iOS.