Facebook for every phone on Orange
VALUE ADDED SERVICES| Feb. 17, 2012, 12:18 p.m.
Orange reports that it is the first operator in the region to use USSD technology, a low-bandwidth data service that is accessible from even the most basic phones, to create access to social networking.
With Facebook via USSD, Orange is providing mobile access to the service to millions of customers in Africa, many potentially for the first time.
Even users with older or very basic handsets without an internet connection or data plan will be able to stay in touch with their family and friends on Facebook through a simple and affordable text-based service.
USSD is a technology used by all GSM mobile devices to send information across a 2G network, and is already used widely in Africa for services such account information and callback services. As USSD is familiar in the region, and as there is no barrier in terms of handset requirements, Orange expects that over one million customers will use the service in the first year.
Orange launched this service at the end of 2011 for Mobinil customers in Egypt, and over 350,000 customers have connected Facebook via USSD in the first month. Orange is launching the service in Orange Côte d'Ivoire this month, and other markets in Orange’s African footprint will launch throughout 2012.
Orange says this the latest in a series of services designed to open up access to digital services in emerging markets such Google SMS chat and email via SMS, and the exclusive Alcatel One Touch range of phones with deep Facebook integration.
No special applications are required to use Facebook via USSD. Customers only need to type a specific code into their phone to open a Facebook via USSD session and enter a PIN code to access the service securely. If the customer is using Facebook via USSD for the first time, they will have to register by providing their Facebook login, Facebook password and by creating a PIN code.
Once connected to Facebook via USSD, customers can search for friends, invite friends, accept or deny friend requests, update their status and comment/like/unlike their friend’s status’. Customers will have the choice between four types of pricing: per session (10 to 20 minutes), daily, weekly and monthly. Exact bundles and tariffs will be confirmed by each country as the service comes to market.
MORE VALUE ADDED SERVICES NEWS
Uber, MTN Nigeria partner to take customers anywhere, any timeMTN Nigeria has partnered with Uber to deliver to MTN subscribers free rides valued at N6, 000, which is N3000 off their first two rides. Read More
Tigo Tanzania announces free WhatsAppTigo Tanzania has announced free WhatsApp services for its 10 million users. Read More
Lock screen content delivery platform launched in NigeriaSliide Airtime today announced Nigeria as the launch market for its Sliide Airtime service which provides users with a new and innovative way to access content from their mobiles and simultaneously earn free airtime. Read More
Glo collaborates with 15 banks to launch new recharge codeGlobacom has partnered with fifteen leading banks to launch a unified short code for customers to purchase Glo airtime at any time from banks in the partnership. Read More
Airtel Ghana launches ‘love month’ promoAirtel Ghana has announced plans to celebrate and reward its cherished customers in February, the ‘love month’, through a Valentine Day promotion dubbed “In The Name of Love”. Read More
Safaricom launches M-PESA statements serviceSafaricom has announced a new service that allow M-PESA customers to access monthly statements free of charge via email. Read More
Ghanaian market catches up with mobile financial servicesThe usage of mobile financial services in Ghana is increasing rapidly, according to a survey conducted by CGAP. Read More
Viber Spreads Good Vibes in Africa with the introduction of public chatsViber, one of the leading messaging and calling apps with more than 664 million unique users worldwide, has opened its latest social channel ‘Public Chats’ to partners in Africa and the Middle East. Read More
Bank starts year with new mobi appBancABC says their newly launched product, BancABCMobi, will allow more customers to use mobile banking solutions in this coming year and many more to come. Read More
FEATURED STORYViber Spreads Good Vibes in Africa with the introduction of public chats
Viber, one of the leading messaging and calling apps with more than 664 million unique users worldwide, has opened its latest social channel ‘Public Chats’ to partners in Africa and the Middle East.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHPoised for greater heights – Roshi Motman, AfricaCom CEO of the Year Winner
Roshi Motman is not your average CEO. Since taking up the reins as the first female CEO of Tigo Ghana in 2014, she has led the Tigo brand through a remarkable transformation.
COMPANY NEWSDStv Eutelsat Star Awards winners named
Students from Ghana and Zimbabwe have scooped top honours at 5th edition of DStv Eutelsat Star Awards organised by MultiChoice Africa and Eutelsat.