Technology

As Jio Users Try To Use Whatsapp, US Based Browserling Went Viral

SHAHNAWAZ | 4
9369
| January 10 , 2018 , 17:56 IST

Reliance Jio recently launched the Jio Phone at the company’s AGM in July 2017. The phone was an instant hit as the company recorded millions of pre booking orders within a fortnight of the launch.

The Jio phone is the cheapest 4G phones available in India but lacks some features like whatsapp. Someone spotted that they could use whatsapp on Jio phones by visiting Browserling: a live interactive cross-browser testing platform. Soon there were several tutorials on YouTube and other digital platforms that taught Jio users how to use Browserling in able to use whatsapp on their phones.

People at browserling unaware of this development were caught splitting their hair when they noticed immense traffic on their website from India, almost all of them from Jio phones. They blocked several users but the traffic kept on increasing. Meanwhile those who were blocked started messaging Browserling on Facebook. It was while blocking one such user that the Browserling co founder Peter Krumins found once such Youtube video.

Krumins mentions in his blog how he used this to his advantage

“I had no idea how much these phones cost or how much money Indian users spent on online services. I quickly put a $1/day link for 1 day of Browserling to see if I could easily monetize it, but no one bought this subscription. Then I decreased the price to $0.50 and still no one was buying. I put a $0.10 cents sessions and still no buyers. I couldn't provide a free service to all of India, so I decided at least to do something with this traffic. So instead of banning the entire country via firewall or a "fatal error" message I created this message and asked users to follow @browserling and tweet messages about it,” wrote Krumins.

He started getting thousands of new followers and tens of thousands of tweets about Browserling. Later he asked users to start following Browserling on Facebook so that he could reconnect with them and let them know when the software was up and running again. This led to him getting thousands of followers on Facebook.

Word spread to Cameroon and Nigeria where people also use cheap phones that can't run Whatsapp or other software and Browserling started setting up servers for Africa as well.

Browserling is now used by Cameroonians to bypass government censorship and get back on social media. Jio users can in a small way be credited for that as well.

Read the full blog here Incredible events at Browserling (must read)

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