Facebook wants to connect the world.
That’s why it formed Internet.org, which offered free access to (parts of) the internet in the developing world — including its “Free Basics” data system, which the Indian government just shut down.
And it’s why the social networking giant is now launching the “Telecom Infra Project” (TIP). It’s an ambitious new scheme to redesign telecoms infrastructure.
Traditional infrastructure is having to deal with unprecedented traffic — more video is being streamed than ever before, as ever-more people get online. Virtual reality media — an area in which Facebook is investing heavily — will only exacerbate the load in years to come.
“Every day, more people and more devices around the world are coming online, and it’s becoming easier to share data-intensive experiences like video and virtual reality,” Jay Parikh, Facebook’s global head of engineering and infrastructure wrote in a blog post. “Scaling traditional telecom infrastructure to meet this global data challenge is not moving as fast as people need it to.”
Facebook has previously had success with the Open Compute Project, an ongoing effort to open-source data centres. TIP will work in a similar fashion in that it will open up plans for network infrastructure. It’s teaming up with companies like Intel and Nokia to work on this.