About a year ago, during the Mobile World Congress held in Barcelona, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg made a sincere effort to project himself and his company as a friend of the wireless carriers and not an enemy or a foe as being projected by various tech experts and news pieces.
While some believed him, others just pointed out towards the company’s continuous efforts to push for the various Internet applications that would have ultimately resulted in undermining the very same mobile operators which the company had earlier projected as their friends. This included Facebook’s own internet services like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Free Basics. These aforementioned applications offers its users features like free calling and free texting, which ultimately results in high revenue losses for these mobile operators.
The project is also aimed at exploring technologies that would help in pushing places like Europe and the U.S. towards the adoption of “5G” technologies. 5G is capable of offering speeds well beyond the 4G networks. On the other hand, in the developing world, the company hopes to make the citizens make a move from the slow 2G networks which is largely the norm there.
But in February, the month which saw the social networking site celebrating its 12th Birthday anniversary as a worldwide friendships day, the company also rekindled it’s friendship with the mobile operators. Facebook did this by announcing a new project that will not help in speeding the evolution of technologies that are primarily central to the mobile networks. Not only this, the social networking giant has decided to share its work with the world’s telecom companies absolutely free of cost.
Mr. Parikh, Facebook’s Vice President engineering and the head of the creation, calls the project the Telecom Infra Project. Under the project, the company will work in close proximity with big telecom players like South Korea’s largest wireless carrier SK Telecom, Germany’s largest wireless carrier Deutsche Telekom and Nokia Networks, the company which provides a considerable percentage of the hardware used by carriers worldwide. Along side these telecom giants, the social networking giant is working towards building everything from new and better wireless radios to optical fiber equipment. Once this is achieved, the company plans to make these designs “open source” so that the wireless carriers are able to assess them absolutely free.
Through this project, the company also aims to having wireless networks that are able to catch up with all the things that’s one doing on their cell phones, right from listening to melodious songs and watching full-fledged videos to exploring virtual reality. According to Parikh, “These really immersive experiences are all looming.” If not tackled in the right way at this very point of time, they could end up as a threat not only for the telecom companies, but also for Facebook. With its new project, the social networking giant is hopeful of ensuring that the telcos are able to deliver all the video and the virtual reality stuff which it would then stream across its social network, all over the world in the coming years.