A team of Facebook managers and engineers went to Africa to test on how good-or bad- facebook works in emerging markets. Unsurprisingly, the experience was horrendous.
The market in Africa is currently dominated by low bandwidth mobile plans, and basic smart phones which only have a single core.
They first purchased a couple of low end single core android phones from the local market and got Facebook to boot up. One of the major problems were that Facebook either crashed before even completely loading or took too long to load. This is very common on single core devices as the processor is often already cluttered with other services. In addition, many services load up concurrently when the application is launched. Facebook engineers then reverse engineered this to remove the bottlenecks one by one.
These changes reduced start times by more than 50 percent in the six months following the trip…
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