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Zuckerberg starts group with tech companies to boost Web access


Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg is forming a group with other technology companies to expand access to the Internet for 5 billion people.

The new group,, includes partnerships with mobile-device makers Samsung Electronics Co. and Nokia Oyj, and chipmaker Qualcomm Inc., Facebook said in a statement Monday. About one-third of the world’s population, or 2.7 billion people, have access to the Internet, and the group will help those that can’t afford to connect, it said.

“Everything Facebook has done has been about giving all people around the world the power to connect,” Zuckerberg said. “There are huge barriers in developing countries to connecting and joining the knowledge economy. brings together a global partnership that will work to overcome these challenges.”

The new group intends to develop projects and mobilize industry and governments to boost Web access. Facebook, owner of the world’s largest social-networking service, is looking for new ways to get more people on its service, which already has more than 1 billion users.

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