Google, Twitter build Speak to Tweet for Egyptians

With Internet service in Egypt all but extinct amid massive protests, those with simple voice connections can now get messages out on Twitter.

Even if the Internet is down, people in Egypt can still use Twitter through a new service from Google and Twitter.
Even if the Internet is down, people in Egypt can still use Twitter through a new service from Google and Twitter. Screenshot by Tom Krazit/CNET

Google, in combination with Twitter and its recently acquired SayNow engineers, has released a service for tweeting without an Internet connection.

Designed specifically for those on the ground in Egypt unable to communicate via the Internet with the outside world, Speak to Tweet allows anyone with a voice connection to dial three international numbers and have their voice messages sent out as tweets with the #egypt hash tag added to those links. "We hope that this will go some way to helping people in Egypt stay connected at this very difficult time," wrote Ujjwal Singh, co-founder of SayNow and AbdelKarim Mardini, product manager, Middle East & North Africa at Google, in a blog post.

The numbers are +16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855 and no Internet connection is required. There are already dozens of messages on the Twitter profile.

The only remaining Internet service provider in Egypt, The Noor Group, was taken offline Monday, according to reports.

About the author

    Tom Krazit writes about the ever-expanding world of Google, as the most prominent company on the Internet defends its search juggernaut while expanding into nearly anything it thinks possible. He has previously written about Apple, the traditional PC industry, and chip companies. E-mail Tom.

     

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