Facebook Lets Workers Slow Down To Understand Emerging Markets

Social media giant Facebook has rolled out 2G Tuesdays to enable employees who log into the companyEUs app on Tuesday mornings to simulate the pace and feel of a 2G Internet connection for an hour.

In the United States, we take fast downloads and quick-loading Web pages for granted. But those things arenEUt the reality in some parts of the world, and American tech companies know that it could be difficult to get established in those areas if pages lag too much. That's why Facebook wants its employees to understand the issue faced by millions of users in emerging markets.

Switching to 2G makes profiles, pages, photos and videos load more slowly than they generally do on the 3G and 4G connections that are available virtually everywhere in the U.S. On a typical 2G network, it can take several minutes to download a Web page.

Eliminating Pain Points

The point of the opt-in program is to study and account for slow network conditions, as well as to come up with new methods of making decisions regarding how a Facebook product should function or look. "We hope this will help us understand how people with 2G connectivity use our product, so we can address issues and pain points in future builds," said Facebook Product Manager Chris Marra in a blog post.

Facebook has already made some strides toward making its mobile app easier to use in such circumstances. Earlier this year, it released Facebook Lite, a slimmed-down version of the app for Android operating systems. Facebook Lite removes the appEUs more data-hungry services but keeps basic functionality and push notifications. The company released Connection Class to help users segment content based on network performance in real time. Facebook also built Augmented Traffic Control, a tool to simulate various network conditions.

India Calling

Marra said 2G Tuesday was born...

Comments are closed.