The Loon Project, which was essential after Hurricane Maria to allow internet access, is “shrinking”
he is Color project, A subsidiary of Alphabet (Google’s parent company), will stop operating the balloon system that allowed internet access in remote areas or areas affected by a natural disaster.
The initiative, which began in 2011, was announced to be closed Thursday by its CEO, Aleister Westgar, who indicated that They have not found a way to keep costs “low enough” to be sustainable in the long term.
Telkom Kenya in Kenya, where it launched as a pilot project last year to cover low-density rural areas, said Loon’s technology will be discontinued on March 1.
The Loon Balloons run 20 kilometers above sea level, above air traffic, wildlife, and weather events.
Your turn during Hurricane Maria
Color balloons She was critical after Hurricane Maria passed by In Puerto Rico when the majority of the population did not have access to the Internet.
In October 2017, it began providing connectivity using stratospheric helium balloons launched from Nevada. At that moment, more than 100,000 people On the island they took advantage.
Project Loon has partnered with carriers to expand connectivity to remote areas so that people around the world can access the internet directly from phones and other LTE-enabled devices.
Made of polyethylene yarn, Project Loon balloons are the size of a tennis court and are designed to stay in the stratosphere for more than a hundred days before returning to Earth.