Free Basics, built for developing markets, focuses on western corporate content and violates net neutrality principles, researchers say
Free Basics, Facebooks free, limited internet service for developing markets, is neither serving local needs nor achieving its objective of bringing people online for the first time.
Thats according to research by citizen media and activist group Global Voices, published this week, which examined the Free Basics service in six different markets Colombia, Ghana, Kenya, Mexico, Pakistan and Philippines to see whether it was serving the intended audience.
Free Basics is a Facebook-developed mobile app that gives users access to a small selection of data-light websites and services. The websites are stripped of photos and videos and can be browsed without paying for mobile data.
Facebook sees this as an on-ramp to using the open internet: by introducing people to a taster of the internet, they will see the value in paying for data, which in turn brings more people online and can help improve their lives.
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