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Facebook And RCom Join Hands To Launch Internet.org In India

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Facebook_RelianceWith the aim to offer free and affordable internet services to the people across the country, Reliance has come together with Facebook to launch a new initiative. The social media giant, Facebook has tied-up with Anil Ambani led firm Reliance Communications to offer free access to the latter’s subscribers. Besides this, the Reliance subscribers will also get access to as many as three-dozen general informational websites.

Facebook and RCom have com-up with this initiative to bring Internet.org to India and it is attempt on part of Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg to provide free internet service to mobile phone users especially in the developing countries.

Internet.org’s mobile application will provide basic internet services in categories such as health, education, communication, jobs and local information free of cost.

Enumerated below are some of the free services that will be offered by Facebook:

  • Social: Facebook, Facebook Messenger
  • Education and Knowledge: Wikipedia, wikiHow, Dictionary.com, Translator, Reuters Market Lite, Jagran Josh
  • Health and Social Welfare: Facts for Life (UNICEF), BabyCentre & MAMA, Girl Effect (Nike Foundation), iLearn (UN Women), Socialblood, AP Speaks
  • Career and Jobs: TimesJobs, Babajob
  • Search: Bing (from Microsoft)
  • News: BBC News, Times of India, India Today, NDTV, BBC News, IBNLive, Aaj Tak, Amarujala.com, Daily Bhaskar, Maalai Malar, Maharashtra Times, Jagran, Newshunt, Manoramanews.com
  • Sports: ESPN Cricinfo
  • Utility: OLX, Astro, Cleartrip, AccuWeather

As mentioned above, Reliance subscribers can also have access to 33 other websites besides having access to Facebook. This is going to be really an interesting format wherein India will be the first Asian country to get the new Internet.org app, wherein Facebook readily targets the mobile phone users. Even though Facebook’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg wrote on his Facebook page “We still have a long way to go to connect India”, “But, I’m optimistic that by getting free basic services into people’s hands, more change can follow pretty rapidly.”

On this new launch, RCom Chief Executive Officer for Consumer Business, Gurdeep Singh stated that “About 70% of people in India don’t have access to the internet. We need to connect a billion people to the internet. We are happy to announce that with Facebook we will offer free access to 33 popular websites.”

Adding to this, Gurdeep also stated that they are committed to launch it on a PAN-India level and that to within a time-frame of 90 days.  At present, these services have been initially launched for Mumbai, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala’s Reliance customers. It is worth noticing that neither of the two companies have disclosed as to who will bear the cost of data that the Reliance subscribers will access free of cost.

Have a look at how Internet.org works on a smartphone:

Image Credit: techcircle.in

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