Feeds

Facebook goes lighter than Lite

Yes, it's Facebook Zero

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

MWC Facebook is introducing a lower-than-low-bandwidth way to get aboard its überpopular social-networking service.

None too surprisingly, it's called Facebook Zero.

According to a the BBC, the service is essentially a text-only version of the Facebook service designed for areas where mobile bandwitch is near-nonexistent - which, as one wag at Inside Facebook put it, ranges "from someone in an especially rural part of Siberia to an iPhone user in downtown San Francisco."

The new service was introduced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona by Facebook's Chamath Palihapitiya, who has the thoroughly Web2.0rheic title of Vice President of User Growth, Mobile, and International Expansion. Although he provided scant detail, the service will be offered to carriers as an inducement to get their customers to trade up from basic service to a "premium" data plan when they want to move beyond mere text to such niceties as photos.

Facebook Zero login

Facebook Mobile (left) is up and running, while Facebook Zero (right) awaits carrier adoption

Facebook already has low-bandwidth services that supplement its main browser-based offering: Facebook Lite, Facebook Mobile, and a version of the mobile app optimized for touchscreen phones other than the iPhone and those built on the Android OS, which have their own native Facebook apps.

The new Facebook Zero will be lighter than Lite and provide mobility to more users than Mobile. Not that Facebook is lacking in mobility. The company recently announced that out of its 400 milion users, 100 million access it from a mobile service each month.

Facebook zero will presumably be offered for free to mobile carriers, and seeing as how it's designed to help them up-sell their data services, we predict it will be a popular offering when it's released in coming weeks.

Don't try to access it quite yet, though. Since it was just announced today, carriers haven't yet jumped aboard this premium-data-plan-inducing gravy train. But they will. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch
Full specs for wrist-mounted device here ... but who'll buy it?
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
Intel unleashed octo-core speed demon for the power-crazed crowd
Haswell-E processors designed for gamers and workstation crowds
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Tim Cook in Applerexia fears: New MacBook THINNER THAN EVER
'Supply chain sources' give up the goss on new iLappy
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?