Facebook on Thursday said it will finance and support developers making applications that will be useful to first time users on the internet, as the social media pursues its mission to connect the next billion users.
Under a new initiative in partnership with industry body Nasscom, Facebook will help developers and students who are building large-scale innovative apps and mobile websites for new-to-internet users by providing them with technical and financial support and resources.
The new initiative will help Facebook expand its user base while also partnering Nasscom's programme to support 10,000 start-ups in the country.
Under this partnership, Facebook and Nasscom will be launching a new programme for developers and students, called 'Leaders Building for the Next Billion'.
Through an application process, 10 developers who have demonstrated a commitment to build for new-to-internet populations will be accepted to a six-month programme. They will be provided with technical, marketing, and financial support, and leadership skills, to build their applications and businesses.
They will also be connected to industry leaders (CEOs, thought leaders, VCs, ecosystem evangelists, social change leaders, etc), funders and the media to bring public attention to their commitment, solutions and impact such that they inspire many other developers to build innovative solutions for new-to-internet users.
Facebook will fund the creation of this track at Nasscom 10,000 Start Ups and welcomes partnerships with other technology leaders to strengthen and expand the programme. The participants will also qualify for $80,000 worth of support.
As a part of the programme, students (4 students per college across 10-15 colleges) will be selected through an application process, to build mobile applications relevant to the next billion and lead engagement with engineers, designers, and other students on campus interested in applying their talent to build mobile applications that are relevant to the next billion people coming online.