Google is partnering with Telkom Kenya to launch a fleet of 35 giant airborne balloons to bring internet access to residents in remote Kenya. An initiative of Google’s Loon Project, the tech company plans to use a fleet of giant airborne balloons to expand connectivity across roughly 20,000 square miles servicing Iten, Eldoret, Baringo, Nakuru, Kakamega, Kisumu, Kisii, Bomet, Kericho, and Narok.
Designed to help developing countries close the internet connectivity gap, the balloons will function like cell towers broadcasting mobile internet at downloads speeds of up to 1839 mbps across vast expanses of land.
Telkom Kenya’s Chief Executive Officer, Mugo Kibati said in a statement, “This is an exciting milestone for internet service provision in Africa and the world, more so that the service will pioneer in Kenya.”
Building on the success of Loon fleet deployments in Sri Lanka and Puerto Rico following the Hurricane Maria, in this fleet deployment in Africa Google hopes to empower some of the nearly 72% of Kenyans without internet using 4G technology.
The balloons will begin their journey in the United States, use wind currents to navigate to Kenya, employ solar energy to reduce carbon emissions.
Source: Good News Network