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Facebook Acquires Feature Phone App Maker Snaptu 62

Posted by timothy
from the hut-hut-hut dept.
Krystalo writes "Facebook has agreed to acquire Snaptu, an Israeli startup that makes Java-based feature phone apps, for an estimated $70 million. The acquisition, for which neither company would reveal financial details, is expected to close within a few weeks. Earlier this year, Facebook worked with the mobile development firm to build a feature phone app that is accessible free of data charges in various overseas markets. The company says the Facebook for Feature Phones app currently works on more than 2,500 devices."
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Facebook Acquires Feature Phone App Maker Snaptu

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  • Re:WTF . . . (Score:4, Informative)

    by c0lo (1497653) on Monday March 21, 2011 @12:27AM (#35556062)
    See here [wikipedia.org]:

    Feature phone is a term used to describe a low-end mobile phone that has less computing ability than a smartphone, but more capability than a "dumb phone".

    TFA

    “Our goal when we founded Snaptu in 2007 was to provide useful and innovative services to the 95 percent of mobile users that don’t have access to advanced smartphones,”

    My reaction: just in time. If they have waited for 2-3 more years, Snaptu would have been extinct (due to the lack of "food" in the eco-system).

  • Re:WTF . . . (Score:5, Informative)

    by camperdave (969942) on Monday March 21, 2011 @12:28AM (#35556066) Journal

    WTF . . .is a feature phone

    I didn't know either. Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] has this to say:

    Feature phone is a term used to describe a low-end mobile phone that has less computing ability than a smartphone, but more capability than a "dumb phone". The term was originally used to describe mobile phones which had features which weren't available on most other contemporary mobile phones

  • Less than smartphone (Score:4, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {selppet}> on Monday March 21, 2011 @12:28AM (#35556070) Homepage Journal
    Wikipedia says [wikipedia.org] a "feature phone" is a mobile phone less powerful than a smartphone. Some run MIDlets designed for J2ME; others run BREW apps. The advantage of carrying a feature phone is 1. no mandatory data bill and 2. easier to find prepaid carriers in the United States.
  • Re:Facebook phone (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 21, 2011 @01:23AM (#35556300)

    Remember all the rumors of a "Facebook phone"? Whatever happened to that?

    The Facebook phones are HTC Salsa and HTC ChaCha

  • by Rennt (582550) on Monday March 21, 2011 @03:58AM (#35556936)
    They're not talking about smart phones. Feature phones traditionally don't have user-installable apps, but ship with a couple of applications (or "features" if you will) installed by default. Pretty much every single phone released in the last 10 years that isn't a smart phone is a feature phone.

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