Gemalto manages to dumb down Facebook

Gemalto, the Dutch digital security specialist, has developed a version of Facebook so small that it fits onto a standard SIM card, meaning that even the most basic of GSM phones would be able to provide the social network to its users.

Facebook for SIM doesn't even require a data connection as it taps into a handset's SMS connectivity to interact. So you'd be able to see friend requests, status updates, wall posts or messages - all via a dedicated SIM application that is designed to automatically work on all GSM phones.

Whilst Mobile World Congress is awash with incredibly rich, media savvy devices, Gemalto's effort may not generate the most headlines - but it is a clever little idea that means Facebook can extend its reach to even the most basic, and most importantly, cheap devices.

“Increasingly people want to be able to stay connected and communicate with their friends on Facebook anytime, anywhere,” said Henri Moissinac, head of mobile business at Facebook.

“Gemalto has developed a creative solution in Facebook for SIM that enables people without mobile data plans to stay connected to their friends on Facebook in an affordable way.”

There are no release details at present, but it's thought that Gemalto and Facebook will target the app towards emerging markets where data plans aren't so prolific.