We just launched Internet.org in India — giving people in six Indian states access to free basic internet services for health, education, jobs and communication.
Over the last year we’ve rolled out Internet.org free basic services to countries with more than 150 million people total across Africa and Latin America. 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.
Today’s announcement is just one step towards changing that. People on the Reliance network in the states of Tamil Nadu, Mahararashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Kerala and Telangana will now have free data access to more than three dozen services.
We still have a long way to go to connect India. But I’m optimistic that by getting free basic services into people’s hands, more change can follow pretty rapidly.
The photo below is from my visit in October to Chandauli, a small rural village in northern India that recently got connected to the internet. Students at this computer center were learning to use the internet for the first time. People from across the surrounding area were visiting the center, and asking the kids to look up information for them. Knowledge and tools were starting to make life better for everyone.
One day, we will connect everyone, and the power of the internet will serve every community across India and the world. That day is coming.