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Facebook-Direct Phones — and Facebook Right On the SIM

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the how-far-can-this-go? dept.

Facebook 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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Typo in the title (0)

wjlafrance (1974820) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216900)

Capital I in RIght.

Ow, ow ow. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Freak (16973) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216906)

This article makes my head hurt...

shrunk Facebook down so that it fits onto a standard SIM card

What? What does that even mean?

Re:Ow, ow ow. (2)

devxo (1963088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216926)

It means that Facebook functionality is added to the sim cards own menu. Usually it's used by the operator to have things like checking balance or ordering extra services. Since it's simple text menu it works on both normal phones and smart phones.

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

Anonymous Freak (16973) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216972)

It's the wording. I have no doubt that an SMS-based service would be possible, even on a "feature phone". But the wording in this article is just horrendous. I mean, honestly, "shrunk Facebook down"?.?.?

Re:Ow, ow ow. (5, Insightful)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217078)

It probably should read:

"shrunk [a program to access to the] Facebook [API via SMS] down so that it fits on a SIM" ... but I guess it's pitched towards non-technical users?

Re:Ow, ow ow. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217652)

http://www.mycheapgolf.com

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218104)

My guess is that they managed to shrink the program down to this: Facebook|http://wap.facebook.com/

Re:Ow, ow ow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35218324)

My provider used to have something like this (PocketNews they called it)

It works by sending commands by sms (text based) to the provider and they send you stuff back

It's basically a menu GUI for the facebook texting commands

Re:Ow, ow ow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35219896)

You mean like ... most of the ones who use Facebook?

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

pieterh (196118) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219128)

Yes, Facebook is now flatter than a pancake. The question is, Scotch pancake, Flemish pannenkoek, or Bretton crepe?

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219744)

cartoon cat, after a encounter with a steamroller.

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217232)

It means there's a good chance that one of these phones will
have security vulnerabilities that other phones may not have.

Who would want one of these SIM cards ? Only an idiot. Which means
these SIMs will sell in very large numbers.

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

Philbert de Zwart (1440831) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220036)

Well, the term 'one of these SIM cards' is misleading: the text states that it can work on any SIM card. That implies that it can be installed on your existing SIM card. Likely the operators will try to hide that fact to make you purchase a new phone though.

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219946)

it means they made a special deal with some operator for a special access point to be used for facebook apps, that would probably only route to facebook.com. (and ran a proto trial of it, maybe).

and then they dumbed down the press release so much that it made them liars. also, if they had told in plain english what they had done in practice then every operator could roll that out if they wanted.

in fact, this is just a similar arrangement many operators were using for their walled gardens in the past!

there's no need for complexity in the sim to achieve this, actually, at all. no need to even give new sims. just push them a new access point.

Re:Ow, ow ow. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219960)

having read what it is really, it's just a sms kludge. horrible! it's 1998 again!

Hardcoded idiocy (2)

jewelises (739285) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216946)

What's the difference between this and the SMS service already offered by Facebook? Facebook's service works even if you don't have a special SIM card, and the last time I checked (several years ago) it had lots of useful features.

Re:Hardcoded idiocy (1)

devxo (1963088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216982)

Well, for one you don't have to remember the commands. Secondly, as it's added directly to the SIM card it may make the operator provide the service free of charge.

However, now with the current generation of smart phones I find the SIM card menu really clumsy and just use it to check my balance.

Re:Hardcoded idiocy (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217808)

Since the SIM card is issued by the carrier, the carrier will completely control whether you can use this card or not. They will also know exactly where this card is sending data. There is no way that this scheme can bypass the carrier for access to Facebook if the carrier doesn't want it to. If the carrier does want to give you access to Facebook for free, they can do that using normal data systems. Carriers also customize both smartphone and feature phone software, so they could include Facebook if they wanted, and could support the feature better that way. The only phones this could effect in any way are 'dumb phones', and I suspect that 'dumb phone' users, are not clambering for Facebook on their phone.

SIM cards are great for phone identities. I loved that when I dropped my Nexus One, I could borrow my son's myTouch and just replace his SIM card with mine to make the phone mine while I waited for my Nexus One to be replaced. That is a great feature. The rest of the features of SIM cards are too late being implemented to be really useful, or have been superseded by data capabilities.

The SIM card news I want to hear is that Google is going to start issuing SIM cards to anyone that asks so that you can use the market in any device, whether it has ever been connected to a cellular network or not.

Re:Hardcoded idiocy (1)

Curmudgeonlyoldbloke (850482) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219574)

Marketing? Like the difference between a squirrel and a rat?

Already been done? (2)

CtownNighrider (1443513) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216958)

I believe there is already a method for texting status updates to facebook. Oh there it is [ehow.com]

So they figured out how to make money with FB (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35216984)

So each time I post,someone posts, or I get a chat it will cost me 20 cents. Carriers will be flocking to FB now.

Re:So they figured out how to make money with FB (2)

mirix (1649853) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218048)

Why did you think handset manufacturers and telcos have been putting facebook type apps on phones? So you get a data plan, so they can stick it to you.

They are musical bigots. (1)

xevioso (598654) | more than 3 years ago | (#35216992)

The Salsa and the ChaCha? What about the Bachata, the Merengue, the Cumbia, the Tejano, and the Norteno? I want a phone named after one of those!

Re:They are musical bigots. (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217494)

The Salsa and the ChaCha?
What about the Bachata, the Merengue, the Cumbia, the Tejano, and the Norteno? I want a phone named after one of those!

Flamenco? Uh, no, Flamenco + FaecBook is a horrendous semantical combination - even worse than Bach fugues + fastfood (both of them being "fast")

Faecbook? (1)

BluBrick (1924) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218220)

Rule 34 - we meet again!

Re:Faecbook? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35218410)

Yeap! [funnyjunk.com] Should have been a supplementary 'e' somewhere, isn't it? ;)

Re:Faecbook? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218458)

Rule 34 - we meet again!

Typo (or ... was it?!). Anyway, I like the way you think.
Given the percentage of the Earth's population having a FB account, is awful how large is the trivial (/no-sweat) domain of applicability for the rule 34.

Facebook on your phone (2, Interesting)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217020)

What could possibly go wrong... Next, your phone's contact list is automatically forwarded to facebook.

Re:Facebook on your phone (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217180)

What could possibly go wrong... Next, your phone's contact list is automatically forwarded to facebook.

That's a feature! Well...for them, anyway. Not us.

Re:Facebook on your phone (3, Informative)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218696)

"...Next, your phone's contact list is automatically forwarded to facebook."

Seriously, dude.

As well as the contents of their schedulers, alarm settings, GPS coordinates...

And from that, one can determine actual sleep schedule (from the times the GPS location remains idle), the stores in which one shops at (GPS locations), the routes one takes to friends houses (GPS locations, frequency of visits)...fuck dude, the list goes on. Just think of all the possible connections Facebook can deduce from that data provided, in REAL TIME. What is wrong with these people (and by that I mean both the users and Facebook)?

This is people paying for virtual Verichips. Doesn't anyone see this besides me? Does anyone REALLY expect Facebook to apply any real morality to the usage of such data? It will be sold to anyone that can pay. That is what Facebook does, sells data.

And I thought the government having this sort of data on so many people was spine-chilling, but corporations?

Where is Howard Beale when you need him?

Re:Facebook on your phone (1)

Jaruzel (804522) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218828)

What he said.

Mod this guy up. Or at least send him a free tin foil hat.

-Jar

The difference? (3, Insightful)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217026)

Well I don't know how it is in the EU and other countries, but here in the US the consumer gets shafted on SMS fees. Last time I checked it was still $19.99 at a minimum for unlimited SMS messages for most carriers (with fine print stating that out of network messages are priced differently). It's the most ridiculous markup I have ever seen and the sheep continue to pay it. The markup is not infinite of course, but I would claim that it is at *least* five 9's.

The data plan for my BB is $29.99. Verizon's minimum plan with unlimited mobile to mobile messaging is $10 (which more than likely does not apply to Facebook's SMS), and $19.99 for 5,000 texts and unlimited mobile to mobile SMS.

The tone of the article would seem to suggest that Facebook on SIM would allow a person to bypass a data plan and save money bringing Facebook to a wider audience.

What blows me away is that it would seemingly generate a large volume of messages and where I live would ultimately cost more than the data plan, in addition... to you not having a data plan.

Re:The difference? (2)

DanTheStone (1212500) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217220)

Unlimited domestic text messages are a difference of $10 on my T-Mobile (yes, US) plan.

Re:The difference? (1)

DanTheStone (1212500) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217250)

Rereading, perhaps I misunderstood or was not clear. I've never had a text message to or from a company that wasn't considered a domestic message. Why would you expect messages to and from this one to be non-domestic?

Re:The difference? (1)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217584)

I am going to assume that by domestic, you mean in-network, or mobile to mobile.

Unless this Facebook SMS service operates on what Verizon considers its service, it would be considered "non-domestic" as you put it.

Now I will admit, I don't know this for certain, but I don't see any reason why Verizon would consider short code SMS messages to be within their network. It literally is not. I can easily see Verizon or other carriers counting them towards your monthly limit.

Now if by domestic, T-Mobile really means any number in the US, then I *still* don't know if that includes all short codes because not all short codes are based in the US.

My concern with any system that utilizes large volumes of SMS messages to transfer data and trigger events is the cost. If your T-Mobile plan really is unlimited and considers Facebook to be part of it, then I agree it would work for you and be cheaper.

Re:The difference? (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218142)

Knowing the network operators, I'd be willing to bet on them being premium rate SMS.

Re:The difference? (3, Informative)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217266)

In the EU people don't pay to receive SMS. I also pay 0.09E to send them to every national carrier from a prepaid plan with no monthly fees.

I could get better deals if I agreed to recharge it periodically, but I'm not a heavy user so I wouldn't spend it all and it would just accumulate for nothing.

Re:The difference? (1)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217438)

Well that is a much better and more sensible deal.

Probably because the EU shows more common sense in its legislation overall than the US does. Here in the US you do get charged for incoming SMS which is why everybody gets their panties in a bunch with SMS marketing.

It's always been that way in the US. Telemarketing was banned from knowingly calling cell phones because it instantly passed on a cost to the person for unwanted communications.

Quite insane actually. I know that sending SMS marketing in the US is a lot more difficult right now. Click-A-Tell got their asses handed to them when quite a number of carriers revoked their short codes. As far as I know, Click-A-Tell is still banned from 1 or 2 carriers in the US. Last I looked into it their inability to send messages to certain carriers was already at 90 days with some of the employees saying it was never coming back. Since then, most of the Bulk SMS companies have become quite stringent on just who you can call and a lot of them require the cellular customer to specifically opt-in on their own short code *before* you can send messages. For awhile the term Click-A-Tell-Refugee was a term going around in the industry. To say they lost market share was a huge understatement. All because some dick from Romania sent out a few million SMS spam/phishing messages.

This would all be avoided if consumers did not have to pay for incoming and they raised the cost the Bulk SMS outfits pay to send it. Wireless Carriers would be under a lot less stress and consumers would probably care less about the SMS spam. Especially if they could add short codes and numbers to their own block lists.

This makes even more sense now because SMS use by enterprise seems to be growing and the number of projects I am that involve SMS integration at some level is 100% in the last 24 months. It's the big thing right now for communicating to your customers instead of email, phone, and snail mail. That.... and Facebook of course. Pass the costs off to enterprise and businesses.

In the end though, the rampant stupidity and high costs is kind of my point. Facebook on SIM will never take off here in the US because the cost of SMS too quickly passes the cost of a data plan.

Re:The difference? (1)

cbope (130292) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218728)

Not sure about other EU countries, but where I live I can list my mobile number as a business number, and that blocks telemarketing and sms spamming. In fact in more than 10 years, I cannot remember ever getting a telemarketing call or sms spam on my phone. Yes, it's my primary business phone but it's also my personal use phone as well. It's just not a problem here. I have also not had a landline in the same span of time, so I don't get any telemarketing calls, period.

I hear that the do-not-call list in the US really doesn't work. My folks still get calls all the time at home and they added their number to the list. Here, since I have added my number to the do-not-call list, if a telemarketer actually were to call me, I can report them and there are fines for violating the policy. I believe the same goes for sms spam. Oh, and we pay a few cents per sms message, I think it's around 0.07€ per message on my current carrier... translated, roughly about $0.10 per message.

And let's not get started on the privacy issues rampant in the US now... heavy-handed marketing and advertising are really getting out of hand over there and nobody seems to be willing or able to stop it.

Re:The difference? (1)

devjoe (88696) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220118)

The do-not-call list in the US doesn't work because there are too many loopholes in the law. Political calls, surveys not meant to sell a product, and charities are exempted. So instead of me getting 2-5 scam extended vehicle warranty and other such calls a week (and occasional legitimate sales calls), I get a couple of charities or surveys each week and multiple political calls a day when there is an election soon. It actually does greatly cut down on the scam calls, though perhaps that is also partly due to a lot of the scammers having gotten busted.

Re:The difference? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220964)

In fact in more than 10 years, I cannot remember ever getting a telemarketing call or sms spam on my phone.

There is almost no point in telemarketing/cold calling to mobile phones, as everybody reads the incoming name/number and is unlikely to respond to an unknown number.

Re:The difference? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217530)

What blows me away is that it would seemingly generate a large volume of messages and where I live would ultimately cost more than the data plan, in addition... to you not having a data plan.

In addition to (TFA):

We do know, however, that Gemalto plans to offer Facebook for SIM on a limited free trial period and will then have it operate on a subscription model.

There you go: pay for SMS-es to your telco and to Gemalto and still have no data plan. But... I guess they'll have a good enough market segment: lotsa consumers for FB.

Re:The difference? (1)

philj (13777) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219122)

I imagine the SMSes will be free. I think they're USSD Requests.

Re:The difference? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219954)

operators quit advertising/selling unlimited sms plans in finland after they got used for data logging, it was a _very_ short timespan when it made sense and that's how it is going to be elsewhere as well, gprs is just so much better at it than routing through sms.

Re:The difference? (1)

FrankWhite_KingOfNJ (842073) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220624)

Sprint includes text messaging in there unlimited plan. Even at $10 more a month, it's still the best deal in the US. And free mobile to mobile calling (any mobile). And nights and weekends start at 7pm-7am. and you roam for free (with the unlimited plan, required for all smart phones) on the Big V's network.

More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (2, Interesting)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217054)

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.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

devxo (1963088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217118)

Uh, how it is without permission? You're buying a phone that completely integrates with Facebook. I'm pretty sure even the stupidest person understands it's going to share data with Facebook.

Besides, what are you complaining about? The phones are clearly made towards people who want that level of integration for their phones. Is someone making you use the phone without you wanting to? No.

Personally I think it's really innovative from HTC and exactly the kind of thing that Android openness can be used for and what differences you from all the other phone manufacturers and models on the market. Everything else now a days seems like a copy of other phones.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217314)

My point is that I do not believe for one second that the functionality described is what will actually be implemented. This is a data-mining opportunity, and Facebook has demonstrated enough unethical behavior with regard to data handling and silent collection/distribution of user information that regardless of what they say they will do, I believe Facebook will have both the capability and intent to collect information on all aspects of the phone's usage... whether the user wants that or not.

If you're fine with that, well, enjoy your phone. You obviously trust Facebook much more than I do. Just don't tell me that I should believe everything Facebook says about what will actually be integrated into your phone or what they will do with it. There is a difference between "quick post to Facebook" and "dump your call log and browser history to Facebook"... but hey, both come under "share data with Facebook", right? They'd never collect more data than they said they would, right?

What I do not want is for every smartphone to have this integrated, or to have it integrated without telling me. What I do not want is for participation in Facebook or directly proving it user-data to be required of a smartphone user. I'm not saying that low-level Facebook integration shouldn't exist; people have the right to be monitored if they like that. What I'm saying is that I won't buy a phone with this integration, and I will get really upset and litigious if I find out that there is low-level Facebook integration present in a phone that does not clearly warn of its presence.

I know the difference between "I don't like something" and "it shouldn't exist at all". I also know the difference between what Facebook's privacy policy claims and what Facebook has actually done.

Cameras, web access, email, etc...etc...etc... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217426)

Uh, how it is without permission? You're buying a phone that completely integrates with Facebook.

There will come a day when every fucking phone will have FB chips in them. Try getting a phone without a camera, web, email, bullshit feature after BS feature. If there are phones like that still in existence, they only able to work on shit services; which means I don't even bother to look.

People are sheep and sheep all flock to the same shit.

Now, I'm going hook electrodes to my balls for even reading this fucking site and vice grips to crush them for actually fucking posting here.

I hate it when I act like a sheep. Baaaaaaaaaaa!

Re:Cameras, web access, email, etc...etc...etc... (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217558)

If there are phones like that still in existence, they only able to work on shit services; which means I don't even bother to look.

Netbook+PCMCIA Mobile Internet+Skype=a big "smartphone" (add a headset to it).

Now, I'm going hook electrodes to my balls for even reading this fucking site and vice grips to crush them for actually fucking posting here.

Good, one less /.-er for the next generation.

Re:Cameras, web access, email, etc...etc...etc... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217828)

I still have a flip-phone. Texting is the most sophisticated thing it can do, to my knowledge. I got it from Virgin Mobile, who uses Sprint's network. The service is a little pricey because I'm pay-as-you-go, but I only spend ~$120/year on it total, so I'm content. I have no complaints about call strength that can't be solved by the advice of 'step out from under the 11 stories of concrete above your head'.

Re:Cameras, web access, email, etc...etc...etc... (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217844)

Why would I want a phone without a camera, web browser or email client?

Having a pocket computer is awesome.

Doesn't mean I want hardware-level FB integration though.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217138)

No, that is not what the proposal is. I didn't read TFA either, but I did read the summary. I can recommend this course of action if you want to post comments without looking like a total moron.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (0)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217264)

Paragraphs 1 & 2 - interesting.
Paragraphs 3 & 4 - eh...
Paragraph 5 - err, as you say, just, you know, don't buy a product that's aimed at a target market that clearly doesn't include you. Same as you don't have to buy a Lady Gaga album if you don't like it. (Or Metallica, or Mozart...).

And from the tenor of your post I think it's a fair assumption that you don't have a Facebook account. So...strike two, surely?

I really do like the points you raise in the first half of your post. I just don't like the whining that is so prevalent on /. these days.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (2)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217280)

The funny thing is, you think the phone company hasn't already been doing everything you mention for years.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (5, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217294)

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

Might want to read the article, buddy. It's an implementation of Facebook's SMS API at a SIM level. It doesn't report anything, unless you, the user, uses it to explicitly send a message to Facebook.

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

Last I looked "Gemalto, a Dutch digital security company", wasn't Facebook.

All this without permission, or in stark contrast to denial of permission, automatically and silently.

Now you're just pulling things out of your arse.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (0)

Caerdwyn (829058) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217326)

Those that ignore history are doomed to repeat it.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217598)

Those that practice paranoia without comprehension are doomed to be hanging around subway stations wearing sandwich boards

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218778)

Not if they don't ignore history and avoid the causes of becoming a subway-loitering sandwich-board wearer.

Dammit, now I'm hungry!

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218638)

No, that's not actually technically possible with SIM Services. It's a very restricted platform, technically. For one thing it doesn't know shit about the handset it's in, much less have an ability to interrogate the GPS hardware on that handset.

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35218934)

Yes, it knows.

Source: I work with this shit

Re:More data for Zoidberg, er Zuckerberg (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219146)

Source: I work with this shit

Not really an "I" when you're an Anonymous Coward.

Isn't that Twitter? (1)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217094)

I thought the whole genesis of Twitter was the status-updates-via-SMS?

Bold claim (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217096)

"anyone with a GSM phone to enjoy the service even if without a data plan"

I have a working Motorola 7200 from 1994, still confident that I can "enjoy the service"?

Re:Bold claim (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217484)

if it has a sim card, it should work

in the usa SMS with out a plan costs more then dat (2)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217162)

in the usa SMS with out a plan costs more then data (with out a data plan) is it about $1,300 per MEG.

2G? (1)

NewsWatcher (450241) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217206)

I will admit to having limited understanding of exactly what the article meant, but maybe someone more enlightened than I am can tell me whether it will work with a 2G phone, or whether you will need 3G.

I have a 3G handset, but my gf is stuck in last millennium and uses only 2G. She is a huge Facebook user.

Re:2G? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217364)

It works on most 2G GSM phones since '95. See SIM Application Toolkit [gemalto.com] .

Re:2G? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35219594)

"She is a huge Facebook user."

Like all the girls and girlie men.

HTTPS is now available: Let's use SMS instead! (4, Interesting)

gnapster (1401889) | more than 3 years ago | (#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.

Re:HTTPS is now available: Let's use SMS instead! (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217582)

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

With? Is TOR-over-SMS impossible? (*duck*)

Re:HTTPS is now available: Let's use SMS instead! (1)

gnapster (1401889) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217640)

Tor's great and all, but if we're charged by the SMS message, I don't know anyone who would be willing to be an exit node!

I wonder... if they are able to 'shrink Facebook down so that it fits onto a standard SIM card', could they throw on some data for a one-time pad, too?

Re:HTTPS is now available: Let's use SMS instead! (1)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218528)

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

If I had been a protester in Egypt or Tunisia, I would not want to use a card backdoored by a government that has traditionally been friendly to my own government.

Why do people still trust Gemalto (or anything else made in France, for that matter...)?

Security? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217274)

I know there is no privacy expectations anyway. But if the system uses SMS to transfer messages and login passwords to a proxy that forwards the data to the website, how does the user know all his information can't be peeked on?

Re:Security? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217504)

mod parent up! ^^

once your phone company has your fb userid and password, why bother asking you for the data, they can just go get it themselves.

im sure they have security measures around this, but i am also quite sure that they are able to be bypassed for reasons of 'national security' or 'terrorism suspicion'

do you think this sort of thing doesn't happen? you haven't been paying attention is all.

Re:Security? (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219130)

mod parent up! ^^

once your phone company has your fb userid and password, why bother asking you for the data, they can just go get it themselves.

im sure they have security measures around this, but i am also quite sure that they are able to be bypassed for reasons of 'national security' or 'terrorism suspicion'

do you think this sort of thing doesn't happen? you haven't been paying attention is all.

Explain to me how this doesn't apply to ISPs, then go further and explain why the companies that are ISPs and telephone companies don't do this already.

When is it too much F***Book? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217308)

F***Book should have it's own nuclear weapons program, too.

Re:When is it too much F***Book? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217592)

F***Book should have it's own nuclear weapons program, too.

Can't. They are not used with the idea of security and Stuxnet is still at large.

Hey, Everyone! (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217324)

I have an evil plan: if this "facebook over SMS" nonsense takes off, there will be loads of poor suckers paying per-sms for the drivel that accumulates there.

Please ensure that all status updates, wall scrawls, and similar communications are greater than 140 octets long...

Re:Hey, Everyone! (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217388)

This is a company in the EU. We don't pay to receive SMS (at least in general, there may be exceptions I don't know about).

Re:Hey, Everyone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217480)

Interesting point here.
We don't pay to receive SMS. We don't pay to receive calls either. It is common place for plans that are less than $30 to include a whole bunch of free SMS, calls and web access, all be it for a not great phone. You guys in the US get smashed on your tarrifs.

http://shop.vodafone.co.uk/shop/catalog/compatiblePhoneGridView.jsp?dependantSkuIds=sku4130028&phoneType=null&skuType=consumerPostpayVoicePlanSku&selection=phoneSku&from=consumerPostpayVoicePlanSku&initialFilters=flt_paymonthly&_requestid=2189

Re:Hey, Everyone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35218862)

What is the relevance of this again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217456)

Why exactly is this better than a data plan?
Aren't SMS gateways to social networks already available?

That's just great! (1)

Rantastic (583764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217602)

...and here I am all irritated that I can't remove the stupid Facebook app that came with my phone. I refused to use AOL the first time around and I won't started using it now just because they call it Facebook.

Re:That's just great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35219866)

Well spotted. Most people don't seem to have notice that Facebook is AOL 2.0

When did slashdot become endless masturbation over apple and facebook?
The masturbation has always been there of course, which is fine. But these companies are fucking lame. It's not news for nerds stuff. Those are mass markets, for the technically feeble.

Facebook über Alles (1)

Jasonjk74 (1104789) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217764)

I'll admit, I cannot bring myself to actually read this article! Given the "opt-out" nature of Facebook's information pilfering, I cannot even fathom having it integrated directly into my phone. Having said that, people will line up in droves to be the first to try it out.

Isn't the SIM one of the worst places? (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 3 years ago | (#35217862)

The article says even pay-as-you-go phones can use this because it doesn't require a data plan.

But... the SIM in your phone comes from your operator. So in order to use it, your operator has to load it onto the SIM before they give it to you.

Why would they charge any less for this service (or the SMSes involved) than they would for a data plan to access Facebook?

It would seem to me you want the program in the phone, where the operator doesn't have any control and thus can't charge you extra to use it. Well, not any more than for other SMSes or data.

Re:Isn't the SIM one of the worst places? (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220168)

Good catch. I'm going to assume that the operator would use the Facebook function as a lure to get people onto their service instead of their rivals', and therefore charging extra is not an option. If you only had one phone network, sure, they could screw you, but there'd be no point in them even bothering to adopt the Facebook SIM to do that.

Screw that, I'm waiting for... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35217920)

...fuckbook.com to be implemented on the SIM!

The technology is interresting (1)

Casandro (751346) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218378)

What they have been using is the 'SIM Application Toolkit', a protocol which allows the SIM-card to request the handset to do things like displaying menu items, sending SMS-messages or opening TCP/IP connections. This Toolkit is available on nearly all handsets, regardless of manufacturer or price.

So in principle, SIM-card manufacturers could just add software to their SIM-cards. The card would execute it, and use the handset as as an IO device. Of course they won't do it, as this would raise the cost of the SIM-card and brings very little advantage to the operator.

However today, cheap adaptors are popping up. Little devices you can actually put in between your SIM-card and your handset. With those, you can actually use the toolkit. Now if you add some flash onto those devices, you could easily make a simple software plattform, bringing smart-phone like features to any handset. Essentially you could just build a simple DRM-free plattform for all handsets.

Sims? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218380)

Sims with Facebook?

Displacing "Your cat" for first place in "Most pathetic things to get a Facebook profile": Video game people.

How about getting Facebook off my phone? (2)

garnetlion (786722) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218508)

My Android phone came with the Facebook app preinstalled and requires rooting to uninstall. At this point I'd be much more interesred in a phone incapable of running Facebook.

Futile (1)

justleavealonemmmkay (1207142) | more than 3 years ago | (#35218966)

It's a SIM application, which means explicit support by the vendor is required. Wouldn't it have been more efficient to just create a dedicated APN for Facebook ?

Gemalto is not Dutch ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35219272)

Gemalto is French

Re:Gemalto is not Dutch ... (1)

calandoa (827455) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220596)

More details: they have their "official" offices in Amsterdam just to pay less taxes, but saying that Gemalto is dutch is as dumb as saying that Google is from Delaware. Sometimes you have to dig a little bit more than just reading Wikipedia...

Sounds like a usability nightmare (1)

gozu (541069) | more than 3 years ago | (#35219704)

SMS is the worst way of interacting facebook that I can imagine. This will be at best a last recourse in extreme situations.

Re:Sounds like a usability nightmare (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35219874)

SMS is the worst way of interacting facebook that I can imagine. This will be at best a last recourse in extreme situations.

So, by extreme situations you mean finding the best sandwich in the coolest coffee shop ever?

Ridiculously Expensive! (1)

bradgoodman (964302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220662)

It is a well established fact that SMS is the most expensive method of communication in the world, byte-for-byte. Sorry, No, not just the world - the universe. (Satellite and space-bound stuff is cheaper than SMS!)

So I don't see how anyone using this with any regularity would quickly spending way more than anyone with a modest data plan.

Re:Ridiculously Expensive! (1)

dave024 (1204956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220744)

You can send unlimited data to a satellite for $19.95 a month?

Re:Ridiculously Expensive! (1)

bradgoodman (964302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35220846)

It's arguable, and perhaps a bit dated, but it is still in general a very expensive. I'm sure you could find a zillion more, but:

http://boingboing.net/2008/05/12/sms-data-rate-is-4x.html

http://gthing.net/the-true-price-of-sms-messages

http://www.privilegedclub.com/42293-sms-the-most-expensive-data-transfer-2/

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