Floating WiFi: Google’s way of expanding internet access

By Kevin Prentice

Project Loon. That’s the name of Google’s new project, their idea to include those deprived of internet with that sweet luxury. Google plans on connecting these areas together by balloon technology, interconnected and beaming information from one balloon to another from the stratosphere.

Google has the utmost confidence in their new project saying “these balloons can deliver widespread economic and social benefits by bringing internet access to the 60% of the world’s people who don’t have it.”

Each balloon has a boxy gondola, used for internet access, with solar powered electronics. To communicate they use radio links, telecommunications network and beam down cellular internet, like those you’d use on your cellular provider to get on Facebook or Twitter. The balloons are made by fashion industry seamsters and some supplies found at a hardware store.

Mike Cassidy, the project’s leader, said, “The technology is now sufficiently cheap and reliable for Google to start planning how to roll it out.” Confident in his creations, Cassidy wants to have enough balloons ready to go by the end of 2015 for testing in several parts of the southern hemisphere.

Cassidy also says that even though Facebook is working on internet delivered by drones, his balloons will be able to hold their own. The drones and satellite competitors are a bit behind Project Loon, plus it’s pricier to launch satellites or power and build drones.

“For a long time balloons will have a big cost advantage,” says Cassidy. Those working on Project Loon are sure that the project will serve the good of the world. Cassidy, speaking with confidence said, “This is a way of changing the world.”

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