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Google Teams up with Telstra to Test Internet Balloon Project in Australia

Google announced that it and Australian telecommunications company Telstra will be coordinating a test flight of 20 balloons above western Queensland in December. The trial is part of Google X’s Project Loon, intended to provide internet to remote parts of the world using helium balloons that can beam 4G-like signals to homes and phones below. Telstra will provide base stations to send signals to the nearest balloon, which relays signals to neighboring balloons out of range of the base station. Google’s ultimate goal is to bring internet to the estimated two-thirds of the world’s population who are currently without. Such a network could also eventually be deployed in areas damaged by natural disasters, and could allow developing countries to avoid laying expensive underground fiber cabling. Google X, the lab also working on Google Glass and driverless cars, previously tested the network above Christchurch, New Zealand. (ZD Net)(Engadget)


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