Two years after acquiring the company that built a Facebook app for feature phones, Facebook for Every Phone has reached more than 100m monthly users.
Facebook for Every Phone is a native app that works on more than 3,000 types of feature phones from almost every handset manufacturer, providing users without smartphones access to Facebook on the go.
Some of the phones enabled for Facebook for Every Phone cost as little as US$20 and Facebook has also partnered with a number of mobile operators worldwide to provide free or discounted periods of data access for these users.
The idea is to make the mobile Facebook experience available in developing markets such as India, Indonesia and the Philippines. Just like Facebook’s apps for smartphones, users of Facebook for Every Phone can see their news feed, contact friends through Facebook Messenger or browse through photos.
The feature phone app has been optimised to use less data and is faster than browsing the social network’s mobile site. It’s powered by technology created by Snaptu, the Israel-based mobile platform acquired by Facebook in 2011 that relaunched as Facebook for Every Phone in July that year.
“This is an important milestone for us,” said Ran Makavy, co-founder of Snaptu and now part of Facebook’s Growth Team in California. “Facebook’s mission is to make the world more open and connected, and Facebook For Every Phone enables people around the globe to connect to the people and things they care about most, no matter what kind of mobile device they use.”
Facebook for Every Phone works only on Java handsets. It comes preloaded on some feature phones or can be downloaded from the phone’s app store or via m.facebook.com.