Per the previous, WSJ's Heidi Vogt lays out why companies like Facebook and Google are looking at ways to bring the internet to places where it isn't or can't currently be. In a nutshell, you've got a billion internet virgins in Africa just waiting to get acclimated to a willing and able provider, especially if said provider can bundle it together with can't live without them services (looking at you Whats App.)
Tech companies world-wide are trying to reach billions of people just beyond the middle class, and many of them are in Africa. Only about 16% of Africa's one billion people use the Internet, according to the International Telecommunication Union industry group. That is well behind Asia, with 32%, and Arab states, with 38%.
But Africa is the fastest-growing region for accessing the Internet by phone. Mobile-broadband penetration on the continent rose to 11% last year from 2% in 2010, the group says.