Facebook has been secretly testing an app in China called Colorful Balloons

The Verge Technology 10 months ago

In May, Facebook quietly launched a photo-sharing app called Colorful Balloons in China, where the social networking site is banned, according to a report in The New York Times.

Colorful Balloons appears to mimic the look and feel of Facebook’s Moments app, which allows users to share photos with friends and family members. Rather than interfacing with Facebook, the app works with the country’s biggest social network, WeChat. Facebook released the app through a local company called Youge Internet Technology, without any hint of branding from the social media giant, and appears to have taken efforts to ensure that it doesn’t spread widely.

China banned Facebook in July 2009, and partially blocked WhatsApp in July. Since then, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been working to find a way to get the social network reintroduced into the country, meeting with governmental officials and reportedly working on software for the country that helps suppress posts from appearing in a specific geographic area. The Times describes this quiet rollout as “unprecedented,” and that it demonstrates the effort that tech companies will undertake to try and gain a foothold into China and its population of 700 million internet users. It’s not clear if the Chinese government is aware of Facebook’s efforts: the Cyberspace Administration of China didn’t respond to a request for comment from the Times.

The rollout doesn’t appear to be an effort to launch a social network under the radar. The Times describes the initiative as a way for Facebook to “see how Chinese users digitally share information with their friends or interact with their favorite social media platforms.” In a statement provided to the Times and Business Insider, Facebook said that it is “spending time understanding and learning more about the country in different ways. Our focus right now is on helping Chinese businesses and developers expand to new markets outside China by using our ad platform.”

Source link
Read also:
NDTV News Technology 10 months ago
Four years ago, Facebook spent over $150 million on a free app used by millions.Today that app, called Onavo, has become a little-known weapon in...
Washington Post Travel 10 months ago
SAN FRANCISCO — Four years ago, Facebook spent over $150 million on a free app used by millions. Today that app, called Onavo, has become a...
Slate Technology 10 months ago
This week, Facebook began rolling out a new hub for online video, called Watch. The feature, which will show up as a separate tab from the news feed...
The New York Times Technology 10 months ago
The social media giant has quietly authorized the release of a Chinese version of its Moments app, a highly unusual move that raises transparency...
CNN Politics 10 months ago
A maritime dispute in the South China Sea flared up on Thursday when a US destroyer sailed near man-made island claimed by China, a move Beijing...
NDTV News Technology 10 months ago
Facebook, whose social media platform is blocked in China, authorised a local company to launch a photo-sharing application in the country in May...
Axios Technology 10 months ago
Facebook has signed off on a new photo-sharing app in China through a local company, the New York Times reports — absent any public ties to the tech...
Axios Technology 10 months ago
Facebook is testing a photo-sharing app in China, called Colorful Balloons, that is similar to Facebook's Moments app, but isn't identified as linked...
Bloomberg Technology 10 months ago
Facebook Inc. has found a new way to enter China: secretly launching an app under a different name.The photo-sharing app, called Colorful Balloons...
Business Insider Technology 10 months ago
Facebook has finally managed to sneak into China. The social network has been secretly testing a photo sharing app called Colorful Balloons in the...
One click to connect
Select a social network to associate your account