Wikipedia Zero countries as of Nov 6 2014
Wikipedia Zero, Wikipedia belongs to all of us.SOURCE: Wikipedia
Volunteer Wikipedians around the world work hard to compile the sum of all human knowledge, to make it freely available to every single person on the planet. For many readers in the Global South, the primary (and often only) access to the internet is via mobile. However, mobile data costs are a significant barrier to internet usage. We created Wikipedia Zero so that everyone can access all the free knowledge on Wikipedia, even if they can't afford the mobile data charges.
Transparency and accountability are among our core values, and we invite you take a look at the Wikipedia Zero operating principles. So far we've launched Wikipedia Zero in 35 countries with 41 operators. We estimate that more than 400 million people can now access Wikipedia free of data charges. Our goal is to work with every mobile operator on the planet -- email us at email@example.com.
Wikipedia Zero has clear benefits to users and to the Wikimedia movement. It also makes good business sense for operators. It's smart to take a leadership role in providing access to vital services over the mobile network, both to educate people about the life-changing power of the mobile internet, and to support economic and societal growth. Operators who support Wikipedia Zero recognize that offering use of their network free of charge can have a huge impact on the people they serve, so it's good business.
Implementing Wikipedia Zero is simple. The operator "zero-rates" access to Wikimedia sites in their billing system, so their subscribers will not incur data charges while accessing Wikipedia and the sister projects on the mobile web or apps. Wikimedia recognizes the user is on that operator's network and serves a banner on the top of the page indicating free data courtesy of their mobile operator, which reinforces a positive brand experience for the operator. When the user leaves the Wikimedia sites, they see a warning message and are asked to confirm, so there is no confusion or risk of surprise charges.
Wikipedia Zero itself is not a separate product from the core Wikipedia mobile site. An original version of the Wikipedia Zero program zero-rated free access to a lightweight, text-only version (located at zero.wikipedia.org) of the Wikipedia mobile site. While several existing partners still offer this version of the program, it will be phased out in favor of the full version.