Flying Internet: Facebook To Provide Satellite Internet Around The World Using Drones

facebook drones internet

March 29, 2014 – Flying Internet: Facebook To Provide Satellite Internet Around The World Using Drones

Facebook’s flying-internet efforts mirror a similar project that’s underway at Google.

The Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, is putting together a lab where a team of Facebook engineers will build flying drones, satellites, and infrared lasers capable of beaming internet connections to people.

Mr. Zuckerberg on Thursday revealed the project to be known as the Facebook Connectivity Lab.

According to Mr. Zuckerberg, the lab’s engineering staff already spans “many of the world’s leading experts in aerospace and communications technology,” including researchers from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, NASA’s Ames Research Center, and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory.

The company is also now adding engineers from a British company called Ascenta, an outfit that helped create the world’s longest solar-powered unmanned aircraft.

All this may seem like a stretch for a social networking company. But it’s a necessary part of Mr. Zuckerberg’s efforts to bring the internet to the vast parts of the world that still don’t have it, an effort known as Internet.org. This appears to make sense for a company whose continued expansion depends on the continued expansion of the internet.

Facebook’s flying-internet efforts mirror a similar project that’s underway at Google. Known as Project Loon, it seeks to provide internet access to the hinterlands through high-altitude balloons. Like Facebook, Google stands to benefit in big ways if the internet expands. The original services built by these two web giants are now used by enormous swaths of the online population, and eventually, the companies must push into an entirely new audience. As public companies, they’re under enormous pressure to continue the growth of their businesses — in perpetuity. In addition to Loon, Google is looking to expand the reach of high-speed internet landlines through a service called Google Fiber.

According to a post on Internet.org, the new Facebook lab is exploring the possibility of using solar-powered high-altitude planes to provide internet access in suburban areas. These could “stay aloft for months, be quickly deployed and deliver reliable internet connections,” the site says. Then, for more remote areas, the lab is looking towards low-orbiting satellites. In both cases, it aims to beam internet access to the people using what’s called free-space optical communication, or FSO. Basically, this is a way of transmitting data through infrared lasers.

Facebook’s announcement came two days after the company acquired a startup called Oculus, saying it would use the startup’s gaming headset as a way of moving its social network into the world of virtual reality. Compared to that, the Connectivity Lab is a rather straightforward business move. On Tuesday, while discussing the Oculus buy, Mr. Zuckerberg painted both projects as platforms that represent not the near future of Facebook, but the distant future.

[Premium Times]

14 thoughts on “Flying Internet: Facebook To Provide Satellite Internet Around The World Using Drones

  1. D drone approach is likely to be a total failure but there is nothing bad in trying
    Where is red? i missed her comments on dis site

    • @ chizzy why r u interjecting dis report? by the way who is d retard called red always leaving nonsense comment 4 attention.

      Back to my comment. FAcebook should come to nigeria when dey finish their laboratory experiment

      • @kuburat I support ur reasoning
        That red is d most annoying character on dis site
        if anybody use her name,she will start cursing
        Am happy she has gone to exile in the red sea where she belongs

        • Bezo the original zombie,the definition of pure blood animal,it pains red more that you bezo the classified,documented idiot will open your cursed mouth to talk about me knowing fully well that i travelled to this red sea to get the only red water to wash you and clean you and see if you can turn back human and think like one.So red is the reason why you have been in hiding? chei!,Anyway,the gods at the red sea said that your case is a lost one since heaven and earth even hell have no record of a person called BEZO,sorry about that,and now back to your den ans anguish because she is back.

      • You know Kuburat, red was almost disappointed that her attention seeking was not getting a positive result,I was mad that all this my attention seeking was not been noticed and wanted to leave but you noticed and called me back so is really working and for that AM BACK TO MAKE THE LIKES OF YOU GROAN IN PAIN WITH MY PRESENT AND ATTENTION SEEKING.Moreover it pains me really ,really,really deep that all this seeking gets me is the attention of LITTLE THINGS LIKE YOU,The rejected project of life clothed in black bitterness and frustrated with life and hates all that shine with love achievement.Am not gonna down baby because am made to direct and lead fools like you to paradise on earth.Am so happy right now knowing that i red ALWAYS send you kuburat to bed every night crying because am seeking and getting all the attention you dreamed of getting here in naijagist.Keep dying slowly.
        AM RED.

        • Aww,thanks Obiageli my sister.you just made my day,I have been around just took a little break to read my dictionary and get more words to piss off bezo d zombie and kuburat d animal.Thanks the love sister.

  2. Nice move!……. I love Red!….. Pls where have u been? Really missing your comments on this site…. @ Haters…. Pls get a life….Gbam

  3. TONYG !,you always find a way to make me smile deep down even when am having a bad day.Red loves you more dear.I do really missed making you smile and laugh with my comments.love you baby.

  4. Wow!….. Glad that red is fully back online….. Welcome back jare…… @ Haters, I know u are all ashamed, d next step is for u all to go hug transformer bcos of red….. Love u red….. Muaaaaaaaaaaaa

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