Pakistan’s only 3G & 4G telecom operator Zong and Facebook have come together to connect more people to the Internet with the launch of Free Basics in Pakistan. With this initiative, more people in Pakistan will have access to a range of free basic service like news, health, travel, local jobs, sports, education, services for women and entertainment via the www.freebasics.com website and mobile application. Free Internet (Internet.org) is available to more than one billion people across Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Speaking on the launch, Director Marketing Zong Zhang Peng said,
We are excited to make the Internet available to millions of people in Pakistan through the launch of Free Basics by Facebook. This initiative will promote the use of the Internet and help enrich people’s lives with new opportunities.
Zong customers (prepaid and postpaid) will be able to receive free access to both Facebook and Free Basic services respectively. There is no subscription required for these services and will be available by default to all Zong subscriber.
Ms. Anna Nygren, Head of Growth Partnerships, APAC at Facebook also commented on this launch:
A critical part of providing internet access to the two-thirds of the world not yet connected is addressing the barriers to internet adoption. Today’s launch of Free Basics in Pakistan with Zong, brings us one step closer to closing the global connectivity gap.
For richer content like videos or external links, Zong customers will be charged as per their data plan when they click on the ‘View Photos’ digital button in the Facebook page (a pop-up will inform customers when they click on such content).
It is important to mention here that Telenor has already launched Internet.org in Pakistan. We can expect more telcos to join too in upcoming months.