Facebook snaps up Snaptu

Gets democratic with mobile apps

Facebook is acquiring Israeli mobile app start-up Snaptu for an undisclosed sum. Snaptu develops smartphone-like mobile applications for the masses who do not have high end handsets.

Founded in 2007, Snaptu has been working on apps for the 95 per cent of mobile users that don’t have access to advanced smartphones and has developed platforms for LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Picasa and Flickr. The apps, which can be downloaded by visiting m.snaptu.com, works on any data-capable phone that can run Java.

The Snaptu blog said on the announcement: “We soon decided that working as part of the Facebook team offered the best opportunity to keep accelerating the pace of our product development. And joining Facebook means we can make an even bigger impact on the world.”

In July 2010 the company hit the 10 million registered users milestone.

The company has been backed by VC funding, most recently securing US$6 million in Series B funding from Carmel Ventures and Sequoia Capital. The company's Facebook for Feature Phones app works on more than 2,500 handsets.

The acquisition is expected to close within weeks.

The deal marks Facebook's third acquisition this year, after buying mobile ad company Rel8tion January, and group messaging company Beluga in March. ®

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