Internet.org and the Globalization of Connectivity

In the wake of the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals by the United Nations, internet connectivity has become a hot topic. Appearing in four out of seventeen goals, global connectivity to the internet is a massive step towards development in rural and impoverished areas. Leading this discussion is Facebook mogul and creator Mark Zuckerberg. In August 2013, Zuckerberg launched internet.org, “a Facebook-led initiative bringing together technology leaders, nonprofits and local communities to connect the two thirds of the world that doesn’t have internet access.”

In March, the internet.org unveiled a massive drone designed to provide broadband services to remote parts of the planet. The drone, which is built by Ascenta and has a wingspan greater than a Boeing 737, is only designed to stay in the air for months at a time, a potentially problematic design.

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The drone in all its glory

On Monday, Facebook revealed that it’s taking measures to remedy this problem by launching a satellite to provide internet from orbit. Partnering with French satellite company Eutelsat, this satellite AMOS-6 will provide internet coverage to vast portions of Sub-Saharan Africa.

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A projection of what the satellite may look like

Follow Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook page to stay updated on the project.

Zuckerbug isn’t the only big player seeking to bring internet to the globe. Google’s “Project Loon,” is a similar attempt at global connectivity using balloons. While these efforts are clearly competitive and partially business driven, we are still thrilled at the thought of people all over the globe having access to the world wide web. With global internet connectivity comes the potential for shared ideas, not just in terms of creation and business, but for health care and education too. We wish both companies the best of luck.

About UNA-GB

Founded over sixty years ago, the United Nations Association of Greater Boston (UNA-GB) is dedicated to building understanding of and support for the ideals and work of the UN among the Greater Boston community. We serve as a resource on the broad agenda of critical global issues addressed by the United Nations and its agencies: peacekeeping, human rights, humanitarian relief, economic development, and education.

Posted on October 7, 2015, in Global Learning and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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