Union Government has given in principle approval to work on Loon project of internet search engine giant Google for providing Internet connectivity by using large balloons.
The announcement was made by Google CEO Sunder Pichai in New Delhi after meeting Union Communication and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.
The project will be started on a pilot basis and state run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) will be partner with the project in order to expand Internet connectivity in the country.
What is Google’s Loon project?
- It is Google’s ambitious research and development project that aims at providing low-cost Internet access to rural and remote areas.
- Under the project, high altitude floating telecom tower balloons are positioned at a height of 20 km, above earth’s surface for transmission of internet services.
- Each balloon can provide full wireless broadband internet coverage up to an area of 40 km. These balloons are mainly powered though solar panels.
- These balloons have transceivers which can connect to cell phone networks in order to fill the gaps in their networks especially in remote areas such as mountains and deserts.
- Google already has successfully tested this technology in New Zealand, California and Brazil.
Apart from Project Loon, Google also has partner with the Common Service Centre (CSC) and Internet Sathi programme (ISP) to expand Internet reach in 3 lakh villages particularly for women training. Google is also focusing on bringing its various products in many more Indian languages.