Facebook hosted an event on Monday to celebrate its 12th anniversary and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he wishes the platform to have 5 billion users by 2030, according to USA Today. According to the UN, the world’s population will grow to 8.5 billion by then, so this is equivalent to 60% of the human race.
Big number but achievable
Providing web access to people has become a priority for Zuckerberg, though in most cases, his talk centers around the idea of connecting people, and rarely does he talk about bringing them to Facebook.
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“We want to finish connecting everyone, we’re going to do it in partnership with governments and different companies all over the world,” Zuckerberg said.
“Despite sounding like a benevolent dictator in the first half of his self-written autobiography, Zuckerberg and Facebook have a good chance of reaching that goal,” says The Verge.
A large number of people are coming online on a daily basis, and it won’t be long before they recognize that the magic of Facebook can help them avoid physical contact, even with their families. When announcing the quarterly results a few days ago, Facebook said it had 1.04 billion daily active users in December 2015. This represents 17% growth from the same quarter last year. For 2015, the social networking giant’s revenue went up 44% on YoY basis.
How Facebook plans to achieve the target
The social networking giant has long been working on bringing the Internet to underserved areas, and this, in turn, will bring Facebook to those areas with help from the Internet.org initiative. A few setbacks have hit this free and very controversial Internet service, which was banned in India and shut down in Egypt, but the company is still determined about it. Facebook said it plans to bring the Internet to refugee camps and is working on a solar-powered drone to beam broadband to users below it.
“It’s solar-powered, and it’ll just fly around a city and beam down internet access. It’s, like, pretty crazy, right?” Zuckerberg said.
Facebook’s Free Basics program has run into a bit of a rough patch recently and is facing regulatory troubles, but it is expected that its other initiatives such as the drones that will beam down the Internet may fare better.