How do you communicate when the government censors the internet? With a peer-to-peer mesh broadcasting network that doesn’t use the internet.
That’s exactly what Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters are doing now, thanks to San Fransisco startup Bridgefy’s Bluetooth-based messaging app. The protesters can communicate with each other — and the public — using no persistent managed network.
And it’s led to swift growth for Bridgefy: downloads are up almost 4,000% over the past 60 days, according to Apptopia estimates (Apptopia is an app metrics company).
The app can connect people via standard Bluetooth across an entire city, thanks to a mesh network. Chatting is speediest with people who are close, of course, within a hundred meters (330 feet), but you can also chat with people who are farther away. Your messages will simply “hop” via other Bridgefy users’ phones until they find your intended target.
See more at Forbes.