More Kenyans are taking advantage of social networking apps to voice their opinions, keep in touch with friends, family and foes, as well as use it as a media tool to communicate key issues affecting society. Facebook, both locally and across the globe is popular by virtue of its longer existence and innovations, and continues to create a platform for new media. It is a process that is undergoing progress amid controversies.
For the basic user like you and me, the app is mostly functional for low-level functionalities. Perhaps, this is probably the most popular way it is used, and with the influx of smart devices that have flocked the local market, more Kenyans are signing up for the service, including our elderly parents and uncles who at one time condemned our phone-clutching tendencies. We have been transformed to adore the benefits of social media, which is just how civilization rolls.
Having established that the preceding assertions are surrounding our daily online lives, it is imperative that we look what Kenya’s third largest telecoms operator Telekom has in offer for the demographic that may not have the ability to furnish daily and heavy Facebook use if they do not posses a smart device, or are in areas with poor network coverage.
Dubbed Facebook Bila Net, this been plan has been around for some time. As its name suggests, it allows subscribers to get access to the service without an internet connection. Its mere existence also means that there are people who purposely reside on Facebook to catch up with friends or drive businesses.
Users can subscribe to three plans: Daily at KES 10, Weekly at KES 50 and Monthly at KES 100. The 30-day option is the admittedly a better deal.
The experience is the same for either of the package with the following offerings: checking notifications and updates, sending status updates, replying to them and sending reactions to posts. At the same time, users can send messages, with the ability to multi-chat and posting on multiple communities at once.
Users can sign up by hitting *32# and following up the prompts. Functionally, it works and after testing it, I have realized that I cannot keep up with a USSD-based Facebook correspondence. It may work for some especially in the aforementioned regions, and unless it is mandatory to stay logged in, I do not see a lot of people using it.