Mark Zuckerberg wants everyone in the world to be online. And, of course, it’s in Facebook’s best interest to get as many people as possible on Facebook, whether or not they shell out for data plans. Data plans mean nothing to Mark Zuckerberg. Dude probably uses some secret Silicon Valley 28G connection only fourteen rich white guys and Sheryl Sandberg know about.
This is to say that Facebook has cut deals with telecom companies in a variety of countries, to provide Facebook access to mobile users who do not have data plans, who use feature phones. Up until now, carriers in the U.S. didn’t get in on this deal, leaving the free mobile Facebooking to just the people who paid for it.
No longer! The New York Times reports that starting this year, Americans will have access to this free Facebook for people without mobile data plans. T-Mobile’s GoSmart Mobile, a low-cost offshoot that offers prepaid services, will include free Facebook access with all mobile plans. Kind of like a freebie. So even people who go for inexpensive options like a $25 a month unlimited voice plan will be able to poke acquaintances.
Facebook mobile is designed for iOS and Android, but there’s also a version that runs on feature phones with simpler software, and this bundling deal will work with both smartphones and feature phones. So now your uncle who just wants a way to call in case of emergencies, no fancy stuff, damn it, will have the option of posting an inappropriate status update on the go.