Facebook is offering free phones to millennials, with some of the company’s executives even going so far as to offer one to the Prime Minister.
The social networking site has been criticised by some for its failure to provide a viable service for young people and the introduction of ads to its mobile app has been a blow to the company.
Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg has promised that the free smartphone will be used by a select group of people, including people who are on the dole, or who are working part-time.
Sandberg has made the offer to young people via her personal page on the social networking service, but she has also set up a Facebook page for Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
“We want to give you something that you can use,” Sandberg said in an email.
Abbott, who is currently in a re-election campaign, has been asked by social media users to meet with the young people.
Many of the comments have been supportive of the Prime Minster.
One Facebook user wrote: “I love you, Sheryl, and you’re doing such a great job.
Thank you so much for your efforts to help people get the help they need.”
Another said: “This is a great idea.
I would also like to offer you a free iPhone.”
Another user wrote, “Thank you for your effort to bring the NBN into Australia.
Your idea is really great.
I can’t wait to hear about your other ideas.”
Sandberg said the offer was aimed at young Australians who were “lucky enough to have access to a phone or tablet” but had “limited” time to use Facebook or Instagram.
“We’ve heard from thousands of young Australians on this issue and the amount of support we’ve received is tremendous,” she said.
“These young people are working full-time and are the backbone of our company and the world.
They’ve been able to have meaningful experiences with friends and family and learn from their peers.
So we’re excited to hear from them.”
It’s important for us to keep them connected, and it’s important to us that we give them something to do with their time and make it more valuable for them.