Facebook and Reliance introduce internet.org to India: This is how it works

Facebook and Reliance Communications have got together to get Internet.org to India. This is Mark Zuckerberg’s initiative to ensure that all the mobile phone users are provided with free internet in the developing countries.

This is carried out by Facebook partnering with content partners and telecom service providers.

Internet.org is planning to connect the subscribers of Reliance Communications (RCom) with free internet, however these services will be provided only for the 33 services and websites which are on their list.



The services have a variety of websites including news websites like Times of India, IBNLive, BBC News; educational services like wikiHow, Translator, Wikipedia; services for Health and Welfare like Socialblood, iLearn, BabyCenter and so on.

RCom subscribers stand to receive all of these services free of cost. To get the Internet.org activated on your phone you can either call 1800 300 25353 or log in on www.internet.org.

Reliance stated that Internet.org will work as any other mobile site on all feature phones; however Android phone users will have to download the app Internet.org.

The Internet.org when logged into throws out two tabs – Reliance and Free Services. The tab labeled Free Services will be providing the free content and services.

33 services are currently available in languages English, Tamil, Hindi, Telugu, Gujarati, Marathi and Malayalam. More languages and services are expected to be added later.

Though it is Facebook which is taking up this initiative, they have only provided a lighter version of Facebook app and Facebook Messenger for Internet.org. No other social networks are being provided right now including Whatsapp which is owned by Facebook.

With Facebook being provided, you can post or read status messages, comment or like pictures and statuses. However, the pictures will remain blurred and to download them you will require data plan or a data connection can be activated at Rs. 9 a day or Rs. 15 for 15 day pack.

RCom’s data plans are advertised on the tab titled Reliance. This includes its 2G Pack, Facebook Pack. Whatsapp Pack etc.

RCom has stated that any phone in which internet has been enabled can make use of Internet.org. On most phones it will appear like a mobile website. At the moment this app is available only for Android phones. It still hasn’t been mentioned as to when the other phones can make use of this service.

Bing has been given as a default search engine. An interesting addition is the APSpeaks. Facebook has joined hands with the Andhra Pradesh Government to create this app, where the citizen can post their problems to the government.

No issues have been encountered regarding page loading on smartphones but on feature phones it is very slow. Things like network connectivity do affect the loading speed, but the phone used in a demo (which was two years old) took about a minute to load.

Facebook claims to have worked with several content partners in order to optimize all of the content in a manner where the limited bandwidth can be utilized. An exact number regarding the data speed transfers has not been released yet.

The service has already gone live for RCom users in the region of Mumbai. Gujarat, Kerala and Maharashtra will see it go live tonight and other states can expect this soon.

About Parasshuram Shalgar 202 Articles
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