When we launched mCent in July 2014, we made it our mission to make the internet free for the next billion. Since then, we have provided 30 million users in emerging markets with 4 billion megabytes of free mobile data. That’s equivalent to one billion app downloads, 16 billion social media posts, and one billion songs streamed.
Today, we are taking the next big step toward fulfilling our mission. We are excited to introduce mCent Browser. Unlike other browsers that promise data compression or offer slimmed-down features to cut data costs, mCent Browser includes all the features of a traditional mobile browser while simultaneously providing users free mobile data. What’s more important, mCent Browser does not restrict which websites users can visit or how they use their data.
I have seen first-hand how access to affordable mobile services can change people’s lives in areas where access is expensive. For a person in India, access to the internet increases their annual income by 29% per capita. This is a major reason why we have chosen India, the world’s second-largest smartphone market, as our launch country. We hope that mCent Browser will become the daily use browser for the 275 million smartphone users in India, many of whom must work 17 hours at minimum wage to afford a 500 MB data plan.
India is also full of opportunity for mobile advertisers. By 2020, spend on mobile advertising will exceed $1 billion, over 10x what it was in 2015. In a time when ad-blocking is increasing in popularity around the world, mCent Browser bridges the divide between advertisers and users through our ad-sponsored data model. Advertisers are able to incorporate their brand and performance marketing campaigns into the browser, without fracturing the consumer experience. By buying into Jana’s user-first approach, brands are also buying into a virtuous cycle where target consumers gain unlocked access to the mobile data they need.
Jana was born out of the insight that smartphones can be used not only for global communication, but can also be powered by data sponsorship. It is our hope that the free, unrestricted internet access provided via mCent Browser will have a profound impact on the lives of billions.