The Internet.org app is making its way around Africa. Facebook announced recently that it is rolling out the app for Airtel subscribers in Kenya. It is also currently available to Airtel members in Zambia and Tigo subscribers in Tanzania.
Facebook blogged about this release:
Today, at AfricaCom in Cape Town, South Africa, Facebook’s Vice President of Internet.org, Chris Daniels spoke about Internet.org and the importance of making internet access available to the two-thirds of the world not yet connected. As part of this effort, Chris announced the availability of Facebook’s Internet.org app for Airtel subscribers in Kenya later this week.
As Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained in Tuesday’s Q3 earnings call, the company wants to expand Internet.org.
Facebook announced today that the Internet.org app, originally launched in Zambia, is now available in Tigo subscribers in Tanzania. Zuckerberg also posted about the availability in Tanzania on his timeline:
We just launched the Internet.org app in Tanzania, providing free data access to a set of basic internet services.
Everyone in Tanzania can now use the internet for free to find jobs, access health resources and use services like Facebook and BBC News to stay connected and informed.
This summer, we introduced the Internet.org app in Zambia and the impact we’ve seen is inspiring. An expectant mother using the internet to prepare for her pregnancy. A student using Wikipedia to study for her exams. A man living far from the library being able to download books online.
Mark Zuckerberg has often stated that the goal of Facebook is to make the world more open and connected. The most global way the company is trying to do this is through Internet.org — a foundation aimed at bringing internet access to more people around the world.
Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO and Co-Founder, addressed the future and goals of Internet.org at its first summit, in New Delhi, India:
So connecting the world is not something that any one company can do by itself. We have to work together with developers and entrepreneurs and businesses and leaders and governments to deliver all of these services and the content that people need. …
Connecting the world, we really believe, is one of the fundamental challenges of our generation. And, you know, progress is going to be difficult here, and it’s not guaranteed. But, I think if we work together, we can really make a big impact on knocking down some of these barriers to connectivity both here in India and all over the world.
The Internet.org movement now has a mobile presence. Facebook announced Thursday that the Internet.org app is available to those in the landlocked southern African country of Zambia.
Through this app, Airtel customers in Zambia can access these apps:
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg shed some light on the company’s acquisition of drone-maker Titan Aerospace, announcing the launch of Facebook’s Connectivity Lab. This organization will further the efforts of Internet.org, which Facebook started last year in an effort to connect underserved populations to the internet.
The engineering talent behind the Open Compute Project has combined with the team from Ascenta, a U.K.-based company specializing in high-altitude long-endurance (HALE) aircraft. Members of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, NASA’s Ames Research Center and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory have also joined the Connectivity Lab.
According to CNBC, Facebook is in the process of acquiring a drone maker.
Facebook is reportedly buying Titan Aerospace, which builds solar atmospheric satellite platforms, for $60 million. This comes just a couple weeks after Facebook purchased mobile SMS-replacement app WhatsApp for $19 billion.
Facebook has not yet responded to an email asking for confirmation.
Mark Zuckerberg’s goal to make the world more open and connected got a bit of a boost when Facebook on Sunday acquired Onavo, a mobile application data startup based in Tel Aviv, Israel and Palo Alto, Calif.
Terms of the deal were not discussed. Facebook will move into Onavo’s Tel Aviv office, becoming the social network’s Israel headquarters. It appears that the Onavo team will be integral in the major goal of Internet.org — providing Internet access to those around the world not connected.
Facebook’s mission has spread far beyond Menlo Park, Calif. Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s CEO and Co-Founder, wants to connect the world. Not only is he a driving force behind Internet.org, the plan to bring Internet access to those in lesser-developed countries, but Facebook has also stepped up its translation services by acquiring startup Mobile Technologies, makers of translation app Jibbigo.
Ofer Shoshan, the CEO of One Hour Translation, applauded Facebook for the move and feels that more major brands on the site should look into translation service as the social network grows internationally.
Mark Zuckerberg wants to add 5 billion more Facebook friends.
Well, not exactly. But he does want to expand the Internet’s reach to 5 billion more residents of this increasingly interconnected planet earth.
In a white paper titled “A Focus on Efficiency” released this week under the aegis of Internet.org, a consortium of companies who’ve adopted the same aim of expanding online access, the Facebook founder outlines a plan to expand technology reach and the importance of the Internet as a human right, a way to pull away from a zero-sum resource-based economy and plug into its knowledge-based counterpart.