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Facebook Cellphones Handhelds Social Networks Hardware

Facebook-Direct Phones — and Facebook Right On the SIM 113

An anonymous reader writes "Gemalto, a Dutch digital security company, has announced Facebook for SIM at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The company's software development team has effectively shrunk Facebook down so that it fits onto a standard SIM card, enabling anyone with a GSM phone to enjoy the service even if without a data plan. In fact, the company is claiming the Facebook application is compatible with 100 percent of SIM-compliant mobile phones. As a result, it works on prepaid as well as on subscription-based mobile plans. In doing so, Gemalto is offering Facebook to millions of mobile phone users regardless of their handset type. Facebook for SIM doesn't require a data connection because it taps into a handset's SMS connectivity to allow the user to interact with the service; users can sign up for Facebook, log in directly, and even check out friend requests, status updates, wall posts, and messages, all via the dedicated SIM application." And if that's just a bit too Facebook-centric for you, a notch down are two phones from HTC just announced in Barcelona, the Salsa and the ChaCha, with dedicated Facebook buttons.
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Facebook-Direct Phones — and Facebook Right On the SIM

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  • by Dunbal ( 464142 ) * on Tuesday February 15, 2011 @09:39PM (#35217020)
    What could possibly go wrong... Next, your phone's contact list is automatically forwarded to facebook.
  • by Caerdwyn ( 829058 ) on Tuesday February 15, 2011 @09:47PM (#35217054) Journal

    So the proposal is to embed into my phone functionality that can report to Facebook every number I dial, every contact I have, every app I have installed, every text message or email I send or receive, everywhere I go via the GPS receiver, every web page I visit, every photo I take. Tracking is full and absolute. Add that info would then be sold to any advertiser with enough cash and given free to any government with a desire to monitor its citizenry, or to any app developer that pinkie-swears to be ethical.

    All this without permission, or in stark contrast to denial of permission, automatically and silently. Assuming there is an opt-out (via the most arcane possible method), what is the likelihood that opt-out would even be honored?

    "But that's paranoid! Facebook would never do that!"

    Facebook's record on matters of privacy and security strongly suggests otherwise.

    Under no circumstances will I buy a smartphone with hardware-level or operating-system-level integration, regardless of anything Facebook or the phone vendor has to say. I would rather do without a smartphone altogether than trust Facebook with... well, anything, really.

  • by gnapster ( 1401889 ) on Tuesday February 15, 2011 @10:16PM (#35217214)

    ... access to the world’s most popular social network, wherever you are and without an Internet connection, could prove very appealing. I think protesters in Egypt would agree.

    If I had been a protester in Egypt or Tunisia recently, I would not want my facebook messages going over the wire by SMS.

Loose bits sink chips.