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Facebook Launches Free Mobile Internet Service

Mashable has reported that Facebook‘s Internet.org project has taken on its biggest market yet.

Internet.org, has been created in an effort to provide free mobile Internet to developing markets, and has recently been launched in India.

Expansion to India has been on the cards for some time after Facebook launched a $1 million fund dedicated to making apps for India at its Internet.org summit in New Facebook AdvertsDelhi last year.

Available in 6 six different Indian states, the service offers users access to a range of healthcare, communication and news services, including Wikipedia, the BBC — and, of course, Facebook.

“Over the last year, we’ve rolled out Internet.org free basic services to countries with more than 150 million people across Africa and Latin America,” Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s cofounder and CEO, said in a post on his Facebook page announcing the launch.

“More than 6 million people are already connected to the internet who previously weren’t, and we’ve started hearing incredible stories about how the internet is changing lives and communities.

Previously Targeted Territories

Internet.org had previously launched in Ghana, Zambia, Kenya, Colombia and Tanzania. India is of particular importance to the company, however, as analysts expect it to surpass the United States as Facebook’s largest market of users in the near future.

Most of the services on Internet.org are available in English and six local languages — Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Gujarati and Marathi — and they can be accessed via the dedicated Android app, the start screen on Opera’s Mini browser or from UCWeb’s popular UC Browser app.

For more on this story, please visit – http://mashable.com/2015/02/10/facebook-internet-india/

 

By | April 27th, 2015|Facebook|Comments Off on Facebook Launches Free Mobile Internet Service

Is Facebook About To Introduce Speech Recognition?

In a move that could have major repercussions, Facebook has recently acquired the speech-recognition start-up Wit.ai, it has been confirmed.

Although neither company is presently prepared to reveal what they have planned to develop, Facebook have praised Wit.ai’s ability to “turn speech and text into actionable data” and confirmed that the existing Wit.ai platform would remain.

Facebook confirmed the deal to the BBC, although neither firm disclosed details of a fee.

A spokesman did however state: “Wit.ai has built an incredible yet simple natural language processing API that has helped developers turn speech and text into actionable data. We’re excited to have them on board.”

What Could This Mean?

According to one analyst, the recent acquisition by Facebook could spark a move into voice messaging, or possibly even introduce the ability to voice control home Facebookappliances.

“If you have more than a billion users and you can connect them to multiple devices, that becomes a very powerful offering. Wit.ai also has the messenger agents and you could see those being incorporated into Facebook,” said Pamela Clark-Dickson of analyst firm Ovum.

She said that while the Facebook-owned WhatsApp has been struggling to get its own voice product to market, Facebook was unlikely to simply use Wit.ai to help out in that respect.

And she said she believed that the Facebook-Wit.ai offering, when it arrived, would be more than a Skype or Siri-like service for Facebook. “I believe it will add value,” she said.

‘Amazing Experiences’

Wit.ai, which has been described as “the Github, the Wikipedia, the Bitcoin of natural language” by founder Alex Lebrun said: “Facebook has the resources and talent to help us take the next step.”

In a statement, it said: “Facebook’s mission is to connect everyone and build amazing experiences for the over 1.3 billion people on the platform – technology that understands natural language is a big part of that, and we think we can help.”

It confirmed its own platform would “remain open and become entirely free for everyone”. It said: “Developers are the life of our project and the energy, enthusiasm and passion of the community has helped turn what was once just a lofty dream, into a reality.”

For more information on this story, please visit – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-30697254

By | January 22nd, 2015|Facebook|Comments Off on Is Facebook About To Introduce Speech Recognition?
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