Sábado, 16 Diciembre, 2017


Google To Provide Hurricane Battered Puerto Rico Phone Service By Balloon

Google to use balloons to supply Puerto Rico with a mobile service FCC Forms Hurricane Recovery Task Force
Eloisa Felix | Octubre 08, 2017, 21:04

It's dedicated to repairing damage caused by the entire season's slew of storms, but will focus on fixing the communications networks on the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, the latter of which was so damaged that almost 90 percent of its cell towers were downed by Hurricane Maria. It could help provide the people of Puerto Rico with access to cellular service to connect with loved ones and access life-saving information.

In effort to help with the relief process after Hurricane Maria, Project Loon also obtained consent agreements to use land mobile radio (LMR) radio spectrum in 900 MHz band from existing carriers in Puerto Rico.

"More than two weeks after Hurricane Maria struck, millions of Puerto Ricans are still without access to much-needed communications services", said Chairman Ajit Pai. But in earlier statements to Mashable, a Loon spokesman said the Puerto Rico effort would be "a little more complicated because we're starting from scratch". Alphabet has begun ramping up pressure for moonshots to generate revenue, partly in hopes of diversifying beyond the search-driven advertising business that still makes up the overwhelming majority of its profits. Using algorithms, the balloons are directed to go where they need to and are moved to a layer of wind where they can provide connectivity to a large area by "moving with the wind" and forming a network, and stay for over 100 days in the air, explains the Google Loon site.

While the backend logistic issue have been resolved, phones on the ground will require a temporary update.

"To deliver signal to people's devices, Loon needs be integrated with a telco partner's network - the balloons can't do it alone", she said, adding that the company is "making solid progress on this next step".

FCC clearance means that X may move forward to partner with a telecommunications service to bring its experimental service directly to the region, as it did in Peru after storms ravaged the nation in May.

Google, like Tesla, will work towards rebuilding the island's devastated infrastructure.

However, it appears that the lack of an existing infrastructure did not pose too significant of a delay. Each balloon will be 15m wide and 12m tall when inflated.