Facebook-headed project aims at providing affordable internet access for all

By IVCPOST Staff Reporter

Aug 22, 2013 04:12 AM EDT

Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer of Facebook Inc, enlisted Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Qualcomm Inc and several other technology firms for a new undertaking. Zuckerberg would lead a project focused on providing affordable web access for the 5 billion individuals worldwide who are not online yet. 

The group, called Internet.org, would be a new attempt to expand internet access to emerging economies. The team would try to explore mobile solutions, including reducing data downloads needed to operate mobile applications like Facebook.

Zuckerberg declined to provide an estimate on the cost of connecting the whole world's population to the web. He said the program would be viable if the network operators' costs would be cut. In turn, this would lessen the fees charged to the users. "They're going to use it to decide what kind of governments they want, get access to healthcare for the first time ever, connect with family hundreds of miles away that they haven't seen in decades," Zuckerberg told CNN's show 'New Day' on Wednesday.

During the second quarter, Facebook posted a revenue of USD1.81 billion, up 53% from last year's USD1.18 billion. The mobile advertising income accounted for around 41% of the social media giant's USD1.60 billion advertising revenue. With the money that the company has including its group's resources, the project could be expected to take effect soon.

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