Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) is planning to bring the Internet to the remaining half the world that currently doesn't have access.
The company's Internet.org initiative has big ambitions, and sometimes tackling a big issue requires some unorthodox approaches. And as Facebook rolls out this service to 29 countries, some are voicing their opinions on what the company is doing. In the following video, analysts Sean O'Reilly and Dylan Lewis explain more about Internet.org and get a grasp of what's next on Facebook's playlist.
Listen to the full podcast by clicking here. A transcript follows the video.
Sean O'Reilly: We talked about this a couple months ago; what's up with Internet.org? The free Internet in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Dylan Lewis: The possibly benevolent plan that might also lead to Facebook world domination. We had that debate when we were talking about open Internet a couple months ago.
O'Reilly: Real quick, for our listeners that may not know what it is, what was the initiative in three sentences?
Lewis: We actually floated this earlier. I think 3.5 billion people in the world have access to the Internet. Internet.org is an initiative to bring Internet access to that remaining half the world that doesn't have Internet.
So far they have rolled out free, basic Internet to people in 29 countries which brings the total to roughly 15 million people online that were not previously online. It's a drop in the bucket considering how addressable that market is.
O'Reilly: The criticism of Internet.org is that it's not the Internet that you and I know. It's actually like 20 services and it's a news app and it's Facebook and 18 other things, right?
Lewis: Yeah. It's everything you would need, but it's not with any variety within that. It's got messaging services, job posting type things, but it's not a free and open Internet. That's why I think it's controversial for some people.
I think ultimately you have to be happy that more people are getting Internet and the world is becoming more connected. I think two very cool things to watch down the pike that they talked about a little bit was Aquila, which is an aircraft designed to beam Internet down to communities from the sky. That sounds terrifying.
O'Reilly: This sounds like the next James Bond movie.
Lewis: Right? That's going to be coming down sometime in the near future. Something they also discussed was, to address the Sub-Saharan Africa using a satellite based Internet access, which is pretty cool.
Dylan Lewis has no position in any stocks mentioned. Sean O'Reilly has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Facebook. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.