Humans are naturally social; we enjoy engagement with others, live through experiences that we share collectively, and learn from them both personally and collectively. Or in other words, to quote Aristotle, we are “by nature a social animal.
With this all in mind, it’s no wonder why social media outlets such as Facebook, which enable us to stay in contact and share experiences, are so successful (Facebook now boasts over 1.44 billion users). This is especially impressive when you consider how this is almost half the number of internet users in the world. However, for Facebook, and for connectivity, there is clearly room for growth and improvement; Mark Zuckerberg has even stated how connectivity has become a basic human right.
So, when we ask ourselves how we can connect everyone, and fulfil that ‘human right’, we should consider how Facebook could be the key to all of this. This is why we’ve been developing global partnerships for mobile expansion with the aim of connecting everything, everywhere. Since 2011, we’ve been committed to providing Facebook access to those who normally wouldn’t have a chance through our Facebook for SIM project. The project has enjoyed great success so far by offering access to Facebook from any mobile phone. By positioning Facebook on the mobile as the main way to access the Internet, emerging & developing economies in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and South East Asia are benefiting greatly from ‘PC free’ connectivity.
For those unfamiliar, Facebook for SIM is a SIM application for MNOs (Mobile Network Operators), which enables anyone to access Facebook on any handset, even without a data connection or subscription. Crucially for MNOs, the service is also a powerful means to boost data usage, bringing Facebook to subscribers who have a smart or internet-enabled phone but aren’t using any internet service. For example, thanks to its Facebook ready SIM that embeds the Facebook for SIM solution, Airtel India increased mobile data adoption compared to its standard mobile users by more than 70%.
Driving mobile users to mobile data usage is also crucial for Facebook, as they’ve found there is an increased engagement on Facebook overall from users who are use data actively every day. Now this key target is understood, we’ve worked extensively with Facebook to develop the ideal user experience – from sign-up, to friend invites, and to mobile data adoption.
Furthermore, the project serves as an example of how partnerships, in this case with Facebook, can lead to great things. Through partnerships like this, we’re working across many industry verticals to bring innovative and important services to remote regions and developing countries through mobile connectivity. Through this connectivity, we can make a real attempt at making the whole world connected (even without complete smartphone penetration) and taking a step closer towards Zuckerberg’s dream of a connected world.
What do you think of Zuckerberg’s dream? Let us know by tweeting to us @Gemalto.