After lots of rumours, Facebook made its own currency official now. This is Calibra, a digital wallet
that will use a new cryptocurrency called Libra. Facebook says it plans to launch Calibra in 2020, and
the service will be available in Messenger and WhatsApp, as well as in a standalone app.
Calibra will help people send and receive Libra crypto currency by simply using a smartphone.
Eventually, Facebook said, it wants to offer more services for people and businesses, including the
ability to easily pay bills, buy a cup of coffee with the scan of a code and use it to ride public transit
without the need for cash or a physical pass.
Aside from limited cases, Facebook said, Calibra won’t share data with it. That means that Calibra
customers’ account information, including financials, won’t be used to improve targeted ads on
Facebook or its family of apps. “The limited cases where this data may be shared reflect our need to
keep people safe, comply with the law, and provide basic functionality to the people who use
Calibra,” according to Facebook. “Calibra will use Facebook data to comply with the law, secure
customers’ accounts, mitigate risk, and prevent criminal activity.”
It means that if you spend an hour a day on social media over a cellular network, you could be using 2.7 GB of data a month. Even half an hour of daily social media browsing could consumer 1.35 GB.
A lot of that usage is likely due to the auto-play video Facebook recently added to its app. The videos appear at different rates for each user based on a variety of factors in Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm. Twitter is also said to have a similar feature coming to its feed soon.
You can disable the auto-play option for newsfeed videos when you’re on a cellular network by going in to the Facebook app and tapping the options button (the three horizontal lines on top of each other) found on the bottom right for the iOS version, and towards the top right for the Android version. Then tap Account Settings > Videos and Photos > Auto-play > disable Smart Auto-play > and tap Use Wi-Fi Only.
What’s more, Calibra is set to “have strong protections in place” to keep people’s money and private
information safe. Facebook says it will rely on the same verification and anti-fraud processes as
banks and credit cards, noting that it will have automated systems designed to proactively monitor
activity and prevent fraudulent behaviour on people’s Calibra account. If someone does gain access
to your account and your Libra balance is affected, the company said Calibra will offer you a refund.
Meanwhile, a dedicated live support team will be there to help people if they lose their phone or the
password to their account.