Google has launched a service that is allowing people in Egypt to still send Twitter messages even though there's been massive disruptions to the internet.
Users dial a number and leave a voicemail, which is then tweeted as a message using the hashtag ‘#egypt’. The clever part is that no internet connection is required.
“Like many people we’ve been glued to the news unfolding in Egypt and thinking of what we could do to help people on the ground,” said Google. “Over the weekend we came up with the idea of a speak-to-tweet service—the ability for anyone to tweet using just a voice connection.”
Google worked with a small team of engineers from Twitter, Google and SayNow, a company the firm acquired just last week.
“It’s already live and anyone can tweet by simply leaving a voicemail on one of these international phone numbers (+16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855) and the service will instantly tweet the message using the hashtag #egypt,” explained Google.
No Internet connection is required and people can listen to the messages by using the same phone numbers or going to twitter.com/speak2tweet.
“We hope that this will go some way to helping people in Egypt stay connected at this very difficult time,” said Google.
Following the political unrest in Egypt, Vodafone this morning closed its 180-strong contact centre and advised its roaming customers to return home.