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Facebook: Efficient apps, spectrum needed to provide low-cost Internet

Sep 17 2013, 21:52 IST
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SummaryEasy availability of spectrum is the top priority of industry to provide affordable access to Internet.

More efficient technologies and applications that lower data usage and costs should be developed in order to provide affordable Internet access to next 5 billion people, according to a body launched by tech firms including Facebook and Samsung.

Easy and more availability of spectrum is the top priority of the industry to provide affordable access to Internet and support the next wave of mobile usage, the paper released by internet.org has said.

The white paper has also listed some technologies like Air Traffic Control, HipHop and WebP which are being used by Facebook and others to deliver and handle huge volumes of data generated by a billion plus users daily.

"Making affordable Internet access a reality for the next 5 billion people depends on the industry achieving a dramatic improvement in the overall efficiency of delivering data," the paper said.

The paper highlighted that it is possible to provide access to basic Internet services for enabling everyone with a phone to get online but the cost involved would be too high to be economically feasible.

"By bringing down the underlying costs of data, and building more efficient apps that use less data, we believe we can increase the efficiency of delivering data by 100 times -Ņ opening up an entirely new world of connected technologies, experiences and opportunities to people in developing countries," the paper said.

Facebook, which has over one billion users worldwide, said it is working to build mobile apps that use less data and power regardless of the type of phone -- smart or feature.

The social giant has also developed an app, Facebook for Every Phone, to meet the needs of people who cannot afford an expensive phone or expensive data plan. The app is being used by over 100 million users every month.

Another internet.org partner Qualcomm said data usage would grow nearly 1,000 times in the next ten years.

To support the next wave of mobile Internet usage, more and exclusive use licensed spectrum and massive R&D efforts are needed in the next decade, Qualcomm said.

"Clearing new bands by a date certain and auctioning them for exclusive use is the industry's top priority," it said.

"With this paper we hope to provide a small contribution to the work of countless companies, entrepreneurs and innovators working to drive new gains in efficiency," the internet.org said.

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