Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg with other technology giants Ericsson, MediaTek, Nokia, Opera, Qualcomm and Samsung have joined hands in global partnership between technology leaders, nonprofits, local communities and experts to launch Internet.org – an effort to reduce the barriers to internet access for developing nations.
Aimed to cut the cost of delivering basic internet services in developing countries, the partner companies intend to accomplish their goal of reaching out to “5 billion people around the globe” by simplifying phone applications so that low speed internet could also run more efficiently and transmit more data on less cost.
Speaking on launch Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said “There are huge barriers in developing countries to connecting and joining the knowledge economy. Internet.org brings together a global partnership that will work to overcome these challenges, including making Internet access available to those who cannot currently afford it.”
Without disclosing much about the project, the announcement talked about the three major initiatives of the partnership:
Making access affordable through cheaper and high quality smartphones, and working with mobile operators to deploy Internet access to the underserved communities.
Using data more efficiently, as the partners will develop data compression tools to help bolster network efficiency, and improve data caching on lower cost.
Helping businesses drive access by creating mutually beneficial incentives for app developers, device OEMs, and operators that will get more people online. The companies will also work to localize the technology by demolish barriers to usage like language.
The project primarily focuses on mobile phone connectivity as a large percentage of population in developing countries use mobile phones for day to day communication. Also smartphones are now more affordable today than personal computers.
Bringing internet to the world isn’t a novel idea. Similarly Google initiated Project Loon few months ago – to help provide internet access in remote areas. While these initiatives benefit the world, they certainly help these internet giants too, as such developing world contains a significant area for such companies to grow.
Similarly, coalition makes more sense for Facebook than any other partner. The move will help the social network to reach out to a significant untapped audience and increase its user base.
Well, whether the philosophy behind is achieving humanitarian goals or own personal interests – the project will undoubtedly help the underserved groups/communities of the world in having them connected to the rest of the world.
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