Google Brings Cellular Service to Puerto Rico Using Balloons

Google Brings Cellular Service to Puerto Rico Using Balloons”

According to the FCC, all 78 Puerto Rican counties are still affected [PDF] by communications service outages as of October 8 in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

What makes the Project Loon balloons so intriguing is how they are completely solar-powered. As most of the smartphones are not capable of transcoding Band 8 LTE signals, the OEMs are necessarily required to push an OTA update for every smartphone in Puerto Rico.

Project Loon has emphasized the fact that it needs to work together with a wireless provider if it aims at restoring the cellular service in the country. Loon recently rolled out internet and LTE service in Peru after flooding there, reportedly providing coverage for an area roughly the size of Switzerland. When it hit, it was nearly a category 5 storm, and pummeled the island with gusts and rains for more than 30 hours.

That's where Project Loon comes in. Coordination with authorities and aid organizations is still a nightmare.

Updates to Loon's navigational system had applied machine learning techniques to the flight data collected for the purpose of predicting wind directions at different altitudes.

Vice President Mike Pence visited the island on Friday in a bid to reassure those on the island that it will receive federal assistance. "PR could be that flagship project". The huge balloons are sent 12 miles from Earth into the stratosphere.

Far-right conspiracy theories surrounding the NFL anthem protests: Alex Jones and Jack Posobiec alleged on Infowars that Soros funded the NFL anthem protests to incite a race war in the United States. However its population is only around 70,000 people, whereas Puerto Rico's is 3.4 million.

Elon Musk, chief executive of Tesla, has said that he plans to send staff to Puerto Rico to help restore power to the island after Hurricane Maria devastated its power grid.

Tesla's Powerwall renewable energy tech powers smaller islands and its thought that it could be scaled up for Puerto Rico.

Project Loon easily provided communication services in Peru because it partnered with Telefónica.

-Jack Nicas contributed to this article.

Alphabet will coordinate with networks operating in the British Virgin Islands so that interference is minimized.

Loon, part of a series of futuristic projects out of Alphabet's "X" laboratory, was originally created to provide internet coverage in under-developed rural areas.

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