Thursday, 22 August 2013

Facebook Wants to Bring the Internet to 5 Billion. But Can It?

Mark Zuckerberg co-launches and calls connectivity a human right.

In the 21st century, the Internet is a global empire of the air, pushing information, commerce, and entertainment from node to node. But it's a lopsided empire, concentrated in those parts of the world that have already built out their infrastructure and in those persons who can afford to pay for the privilege. Many groups, governments, and populations want to change that.

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg is one of them. And Zuckerberg has a plan, and a posse.

In a post on his personal Facebook page late Tuesday night, Zuckerberg announced a new initiative called, which aims to bring inexpensive wireless data to any and all of the more than five billion people with a mobile phone, to breach the so-called digital divide.

In a ten-page essay titled "Is Connectivity A Human Right," Zuckerberg outlined a plan to reduce the cost of mobile data worldwide to enable something close to universal access to the basic benefits of the Internet, including Facebook.

Cisco's annual Internet services adoption forecast shows that while the Internet is growing everywhere, with access predicted to increase from 32 percent of the world's population today to 48 percent by 2017, access in North America and Western Europe far outstrips that of the rest of the world. In particular, for much of the world, especially in Latin America and the Asia Pacific region, the only form of Internet access is mobile.

Zuckerberg says that Facebook has already spent over a billion dollars building Internet infrastructure in the developing world. Even extended over a decade, it's not enough. READ MORE

No comments:

Post a Comment