On July 5, 2010, Bharti Airtel announced that its 130 million subscribers would be able to access Facebook for free for the next two months. The offer will remain till August 31, 2010.
Currently, Facebook is available for no data cost to Reliance Communications and Videocon handset users only. This new service started in May 2010 through Facebooks’ 0.facebook.com mobile site.
For Bharti Airtel subscribers, the Facebook site will be available in English, Hindi and five more Indian languages including Punjabi, Bengali, Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam.
In a statement issued by Airtel, the company said, "For the two-month period, the partnership enables Airtel customers to access Facebook’s full mobile site faster and at no data cost from their Airtel mobiles via m.facebook.com," said an Airtel statement.
Now Bharti Airtel subscribers would be able to post status updates, comment and write on walls, and send message to their friends and families and also view or upload their photos on their Facebook account without paying any data charges.
Mr. Shireesh Joshi, Chief Marketing Officer- Mobile Services, Bharti Airtel, said “We are pleased to bring an industry-leading offer to our 130 million plus customers by announcing this long-term partnership with Facebook - the popular social media service. Our mobile customers will also be the first in the world to enjoy Facebook on their Airtel mobile in five vernacular languages. All of this reiterates our commitment to customers to offer the best value-for-money services that enable their lifestyles.”
Bharti Airtel customer who are accessing mobile Internet for the first time need to SMS ‘FACEBOOk’ to 54321 to take advantage of this offer.