For the developing world, broadband and mobile communications are helping
In Myanmar, the opening of the economy has meant accessible telecommunications for the nation’s farmers reports The Atlantic.
At the same time, Indian Railway’s Telecommunications arm RailTel is opening its fibre network to the public, starting with Wi-Fi at major stations.
What is notable in both cases is the role of Facebook. In India, Facebook’s project to offer free broadband access across the nation is meeting some resistance and it’s probably no coincidence Indian Railway’s WiFi project is being run as partnership with Google.
In Myanmar on the other hand, Facebook and Snapchat are the go to destination for rural communities, it will be interesting to watch how this plays out as farmers start to use the social media service for price discovery and finding new markets – as Tencent Chairman SY Lau last year claimed was happening with Chinese communities.
One of the promises of making the Internet available to the general public was that it would enable the world to become connected, thirty years later we may be seeing the results.