Facebook’s Next Ten Years
With more than 1.65 billion people using its service every month, Facebook now is the world’s largest social network by overwhelming odds. Its advertising business has grown much faster than expectations of analyst because of its sophisticated targeting capabilities. And rivals try desperately to catch up with it. CEO Mark Zuckerberg laid out an ambitious 10-year vision which puts the company at the frontier of computer science, making positive moves in bringing artificial intelligence and virtual reality to the mainstream. His ten-year vision includes the following 8 points: 1 Bringing the world online; 2 Launching Aquila; 3 Terragraph and improving connectivity; 4 the lessons of Free Basics; 5 Artificial intelligence and Zuckerberg’s robot butler; 6 Bots of the future; 7 Facebook’s bet on virtual reality; 8 The challenges of augmented reality.
And yet in meetings with world leaders or at his live Town Hall Q&A sessions, what Zuckerberg talks about most these days is basic internet connectivity. Zuckerberg believes that free infrastructure has brought great benefits to the world’s poor people. “The internet really does bring so many opportunities to people,” he said. “There are all these studies that show that for every 10 people that get on the internet, about one person gets lifted out of poverty, and almost one new job gets created. If you’re talking about 4 billion people who are not on the internet, spreading internet connectivity is clearly one of the biggest things we can do to improve the quality of life for so many people around the world.” He believes that you can’t have the best virtual reality or artificial intelligence services until you bring the internet to everyone of the world who doesn’t have it and significantly improve the internet for everyone who already does.
Zuckerberg also thinks that direct investment in education and health is important. “I think one thing that a lot of people miss is that if you’re living in a town that doesn’t have a good school, then the internet actually is your best bet for getting a good education,” he said. “And if you’re living in a place that doesn’t have a good doctor, then the internet is your best bet for being able to look up what a condition might be”.
Nomatter what else Facebook does going forward, it starts with a connected world. “If we make progress on this, it will be one of the great things that our generation can do to improve lives around the world”, Zuckerberg said.