A mobile social network is a social network where people with common interests meet and converse using a mobile phone or a tablet. It is similar to Web-based social networks and also makes use of virtual communities, with the difference being in the device used. Mobile social networks make use of mobile messaging applications and are considered one of the best ways for providing a smoother user interaction and also for engaging users.
Mobile social networks can be broadly categorized into two types, namely, organizations partnering with phone carriers in distributing their communities and those with no formal tie-in with organizations and phone carriers for attracting users.
Mobile social networks can be advantageous to users. Cost saving is possible since, with mobile messaging applications, unlimited messages can be sent while incurring only Internet data charges rather than standard messaging fees. Group messaging is also possible in most mobile applications, allowing an open conversation between the users. Additionally, the sharing of videos and images is possible through mobile applications.
Mobile social networks can also help in attracting new customers for businesses. Product details and features can be easily transmitted, and new orders can also be achieved through the same.
Many believe that mobile social networks can be addictive and can lower the productivity of employees because of the time spent checking for messages from mobile social applications. A more technical drawback is that it can affect the performance of mobile devices when too many applications are running or when too many messages are being processed.