Facebook’s Mobile Version Offers Indian Users Sign up Incentives, Might Get Voice

The number one social network of the moment goes the extra mile in its search for new mobile users and offers a one US dollar (Rs.50) reward to those in India that sign up on their mobile phones. Another Rs.50 will be given for each referral brought.

The offer is available only for people accessing the network using the  http://m.facebook.com/tt link, and the credits are received in 3 days’ time as airtime credits on their mobile number (talktime).

Many businesses offer incentives to their clients, but a social network that seeks to expand the number of users logging in via mobile phones? That is a new one and we should keep in mind the potential of spamming encouraged by referral rewards. There are already opinions that emphasize the possibility of Facebook actually getting many spam profiles, with the only goal of receiving the Rs.50 for each mobile number a user has. Such a program will no lead to users that will constantly log into the network and use it, but maybe to many accounts that will be used for a short time span. Or, that’s not something Facebook should seek, if it wants to keep being the most valuable brand in the world, surpassing Apple and Google.

In other news, Facebook could soon have its “voice”, like Siri for iPhones. It is in fact an iPhone app, WonderVoice, which launches today and allows users to post on Facebook based on a voice activated dialog. Beware though, that your comments will not appear as text, but as a link that those interested can click on and listen.

This voice-controlled interface for Facebook has several “commands” – for instance if you say “News feed” it will read you the recent items in your feed, but it is still a long way from really enabling fully hands free interaction on Facebook via mobile devices. It is a worth mentioning step though.

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