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MWC 2014 keynote: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg wants to empower billions of mobile users

We're settling into an absolutely packed out conference room for what promises to be one of the biggest stories of this year's MWC extravaganza.

Mark Zuckerberg will be hitting the main stage at 6pm Spanish time - that's 5pm for our UK readership - to deliver his highly-anticipated keynote speech.

Due to the fact that Samsung's big event kicks off in another part of town at 8pm local time, the ITProPortal team has had to split up and go solo. Fortunately for you, this means that we're providing two live blogs, on top of our dedicated MWC 2014 one, so we don't miss anything out.

If you can imagine, people have been queueing for this for about three hours. Even for a show as major as MWC, this is huge.

To make sure we don't get lonely, get chatting with us through the comments section below, and via Twitter and Zuckerberg's own favourite social media platform.

It's time to sit back and enjoy the show.

N.B. This event has now ended.

  • 24 February
  • 18:01

    You stay classy, planet earth.

  • 17:57

    Thanks for tuning in, and make sure you don't miss our Samsung live blog!

  • 17:57

    Unfortunately, we're just about to get kicked out of here.

  • 17:56

    We'll obviously be keeping tabs on the development of over the next many months and we'll update you with all significant news as soon as it arises.

  • 17:54

    Anyone who might have been expecting the launch of a Facebook-branded smartphone will, however, will be inconsolable.

  • 17:53

    By the way, check out our closer look at the alliance that Zuckerberg was talking about.

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  • 17:51

    It would have been wonderful to hear his direct opinion on the matter, but I think we could easily guess what he would have said.

  • 17:50

    Definitely an eye-opener, I'm sure you'll agree. Is Facebook dead and buried? No. It's constantly reinventing itself, and I think we can all appreciate that.

  • 17:48

    And that concludes today's session!

  • 17:47

    Zuckerberg unfortunately didn't rise to the Snapchat bait. Sad face.

  • 17:46

    Witty journalist: "Mark, are you going to make another bid for Snapchat, or have you given up on that?"

    Zuckerberg: Not too impressed.

  • 17:46

    No pressure Zuckerberg, but the world is watching.

  • 17:45

    Zuckerberg assures us that we have nothing to worry about, since WhatsApp deletes all messages as soon as they're delivered.

  • 17:44

    The big data question has been answered, kind of.

  • 17:43

    WhatsApp will continue to operate completely autonomously, but now it has access to Facebook's wealth.

  • 17:42

    Facebook is just trying to help companies do what they've already been trying to do with the alliance.

  • 17:39

    "They went way over the line."

  • 17:38

    Zuckerberg on the NSA's activities: "It's not awesome."

  • 17:38

    The NSA revelations have actually brought a lot of companies closer together.

  • 17:37

    This is by no means Zuckerberg's own vision - he says this requires all of the big boys to work with each other. The Winklevoss twins must be smiling.

  • 17:36

    " is a big coalition across the industry. No one company can do this by itself."

  • 17:35

    Can you spot me in the crowd?

  • 17:34

    He may be cutting a small figure on the stage, but Zuckerberg is dealing with some pretty big topics here.

  • 17:34

    It's a better situation for both consumers and carriers.

  • 17:33

    Less data delivered, but no less quality.

  • 17:31

    Zuckerberg says Facebook wants to make browsing more efficient, which could save consumers a hell of a lot of money in the long run.

  • 17:29

    Wants to decrease the cost of Internet infrastructure and decrease useless data consumption.

  • 17:27

    WhatsApp will be a key part of the project.

  • 17:26

    Independently, WhatsApp's a good bet, says Zuckerberg.

  • 17:26

  • 17:25

    "By itself, I think it's [WhatsApp] worth more than $1 billion."

  • 17:23

    Zuckerberg hopes he can prove that the model can be successful. He wants to work with between three and five firms over the next year.

  • 17:22

    "If we do something good for the world, we'll eventually find a way to benefit."

  • 17:22

    Zuckerberg says there's more to it than cash. He reckons the firm will lose money from for quite a while.

  • 17:21

    Is this just a way for Facebook to make more money?

  • 17:20

  • 17:18

    Kirkpatrick just labelled the scheme a "gateway drug" for consumers and carriers.

  • 17:16

    Will free Facebook browsing really save the world?

  • 17:15 has apparently already made a big impact in developing markets around the world, boosting Internet data usage in certain areas.

  • 17:12

    Did Zuckerberg just say "more data"?

  • 17:11

    He's after increased Internet affordability and access. The web is a "basic service" that everybody should be able to make use of.

  • 17:08

    Bill Gates would blow his top if he was listening to this...

  • 17:07

    "What problem in the world can we solve next?"

  • 17:07

    Today's talk will revolve mainly around that project. Zuckerberg says that the Internet is growing way slower than we think. Still less than half of the world is online.

  • 17:05

    Straight into the big stuff here. Zuckerberg wants to connect everyone in the world - anyone remember the alliance?

  • 17:04

    "WhatsApp is a great company and a great for for us."

  • 17:04

    No hoodie today.

  • 17:03

    Journalist David Kirkpatrick is on stage, introducing the main man.

  • 17:00

    Just about to get going here... Lights are down low and the dance music is pumping.

  • 16:58

    In typical tech conference fashion, the Wi-Fi connection here isn't exactly great, so apologies in advance if we're rudely cut off at any point.

  • 16:53

    We argued long and hard about this in the fourth instalment of our Tech News Weekly podcast, and couldn't really reach a final agreement.

  • 16:41

    We'll have concrete deets across to you shortly. Meanwhile, have you heard that Facebook is past its best, a pensioner, a dinosaur and relatively close to death?

  • 16:35

    The massive WhatsApp outage over the weekend also set many a tongue wagging.

  • 16:33

    Microsoft's Joe Belfiore yesterday let slip that Facebook Messenger is a major new app on its way to Windows Phone within the next few weeks.

  • 16:31

    The social network recently picked up the messaging platform for a cool $19 billion, and the consequent speculation has come in thick and fast.

  • 16:28

    There's no shortage of topics for the big man to talk about. No doubt there'll be some standard self-promotion, loosely-veiled Twitter-bashing, and plenty of WhatsApp-related discussion.

  • 16:26

    In about 35 minutes, Facebook chief Zuckerberg will be on stage, and I'll be typing like a maniac.

  • 16:25

    What a day we're having over here in Barcelona. I'm currently taking great pleasure in being able to sit down.