Facebook will launch a satellite into space in 2016 to provide internet for some of the most remote areas of the planet.

Founder Mark Zuckerberg said: "We're going to keep working to connect the entire world - even if that means looking beyond our planet."

Facebook will team up with French internet provider Eutelast for the project, which is part of the social media giant's wider Internet.org project.

Initially, the satellite will focus on providing internet for areas in Africa and India.

"Over the last year Facebook has been exploring ways to use aircraft and satellites to beam internet access down into communities from the sky," Mr Zuckerberg said.

"To connect people living in remote regions, traditional connectivity infrastructure is often difficult and inefficient, so we need to invent new technologies."

In a statement, Eutelsat said: "Eutelsat and Facebook will each deploy Internet services designed to relieve pent-up demand for connectivity from the many users in Africa beyond range of fixed and mobile terrestrial networks."

The project has received some criticism however, and some of it has been quite strong. In India, in particular, businesses claim the project gives Facebook an unfair advantage over competitors in providing internet to remote areas.