Meta is shutting down its Connectivity arm nearly 10 years after the initiative launched, according to a report from Read light. The company has confirmed that to both Read light and Powerful Wireless that it will instead split the division between the Infrastructure and Central Products teams.
Meta Connectivity (formerly Facebook Connectivity) was launched in 2013 with the goal of getting more people online to use the company’s social networks. Through the initiative, the company developed and then discontinued a project in which autonomous, high-flying drones beamed the internet to underserved parts of the world. It also worked to create a Starlink-like internet system using satellites in low Earth orbit, but the staff developing it was snapped up by Amazon last year.
As noted by Read light, the closure of Meta Connectivity should not affect the company’s involvement in the Telecom Infra Project (TIP), which Meta helped create in 2016. The TIP is a group of telecom companies, service providers and connectivity stakeholders who are developing new telecom infrastructure. Dan Rabinovich, the former head of Meta Connectivity, is still with the company, though it’s unclear if he will move to another department.