Facebook Pours $1 Million Into Indian App Development

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Facebook has awarded over 1 million US dollars to various app developers in India as it attempts to salvage its damaged reputation in the country. Facebook encountered trouble in India earlier this year shortly after it launched its Internet.org initiative in the country. Facebook’s Internet.org project aims to provide key basic internet services to mobile users for free. It faced widespread criticism in the country amidst concerns about internet neutrality, however, which culminated in several major players withdrawing from the app. In response, the social network rebranded the app to be called Free Basics and launched a competition called the Innovation Challenge to encourage Indians from selected demographics to develop apps to be included in Free Basics. The categories were farmers, women, students and migrants, with the top three apps from each category receiving the money, which totalled 1.2 million US dollars in total. 

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