MENLO PARK (CBS SF) – Traditionally when a digital company is anxiously awaiting a launch it has to do with a new product, piece of software, website or service.

So to hear that the executives at the Menlo Park-based social media giant Facebook are nervously awaiting the launch of a new product of sorts next week would not seem to be out of the ordinary.

But this is a very special launch — literally an out of this world launch.

As part of collaboration with Eutelsat, a new satellite called AMOS-6 is being prepared to launch Facebook’s first satellite into orbit on Sept. 3.

The satellite  will be propelled into space from Cape Canaveral on a booster rocket built by Elon Musk’s SpaceX project.

According to Facebook CEO and Founder Mark Zuckerberg, the satellite will orbit over Africa and beamed down internet service to partners in the region who will promote digital access to residents in remote areas.

“Connectivity changes lives and communities. We’re going to keep working to connect the entire world — even if that means looking beyond our planet,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post last October.

The launch is a major step in Zuckerberg’s Internet.org project aimed at bringing digital access to people living in the remote regions of the world.

 

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