The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Application Forecaster
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – The Backup Reminder
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Adopted
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Recovery Backup
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Synchronization
Facebook’s Drones And The Battle For The Sky

Facebook’s Drones And The Battle For The Sky

Facebook’s Drones And The Battle For The Sky

facebook-logo

Back in early March we published an article that reviewed some of the lesser-known facts about Google Loon, a project that aims to use helium-filled weather balloons floating 20 miles above the surface of the earth to provide internet to some of the world’s 4.2 billion people without an internet connection.

After the initial test results proved positive other companies took note. This culminated in a press release by Facebook on 27th March that they also intended to launch a project that aims to provide affordable internet access to every person in the world.

Internet.Org

Internet.Org is a partnership between Facebook, Samsung, Ericsson, MediaTek, Nokia, Opera Software, and Qualcomm. Launched in August 2013, Facebook’s drone-based internet will use Internet.Org as the foundation for its introduction.

The partnership has already seen success in its efforts to bring free mobile internet to the developing world. It has conducted trials with two mobile carriers, Globe in the Philippines and Tigo in Paraguay, and both carriers have at least doubled the number of their customers using mobile data services.

Titan Aerospace

Titan Aerospace makes solar-powered drones that fly at heights of up to 20km above sea level. The company says its drones could fly for years at a time thanks to solar panels on the aircrafts’ wings – a fact that made it an attractive potential acquisition for Facebook when they were looking for a technology on which to base their connectivity dreams.

The potential of the company is so valuable that it became the centre of a Facebook vs Google bidding war. In early March TechCrunch reported that Facebook was on the verge of closing a $60 million deal to buy the New Mexico start-up, but in mid-April The Wall Street Journal revealed that Google had won the battle, concluding an agreement to purchase the company for an undisclosed amount. Titan Aerospace confirmed the news on their own website the following day.

Drones vs. Balloons

Google’s Project Loon has been met with derision in some quarters. Bill Gates was highly critical of the project last summer, using an interview with Bloomberg to state that the project “won’t uplift the poor”. He noted that internet won’t help solve core issues in developing countries, adding that the firm should be doing more to help the poor. “They hired Larry Brilliant [the former director of Google’s charitable arm Google.org], and they got fantastic publicity. And then they shut it all down”, he said.

Zuckerberg himself used the 2014 Mobile World Congress to argue that Project Loon is not the best solution to connecting more of the globe to the internet. He claims more than 80% of the world live somewhere with 2G or 3G internet access and that the really challenge was, therefore, reducing data costs.

Google naturally argue against both Zuckerberg and Gates. They say that Project Loon will help the poverty-stricken areas connect to the web without having to pay for complex infrastructure, and add that the system could also potentially help in the aftermath of a natural disaster in such areas.

Learn More

If you are interested in learning more about Facebook’s initiative you can read their research paper, titled “Connecting the World from the Sky”, or head to Internet.Org’s webpage dedicated to the project where they have an informative video.

What do you think? Whose idea is better – Google or Facebook? Can either of the plans achieve their stated aims? Are they really done for altruistic reasons or is it a commercial ploy to break into developing markets? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

Daniel Price
Follow Me!

Daniel Price

Daniel is a Manchester-born UK native who has abandoned cold and wet Northern Europe and currently lives on the Caribbean coast of Mexico. A former Financial Consultant, he now balances his time between writing articles for several industry-leading tech (CloudTweaks.com & MakeUseOf.com), sports, and travel sites and looking after his three dogs.
Daniel Price
Follow Me!

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

Recent

Mobile Connectivity Rises – 24 Billion Networked Devices By 2019

Mobile Connectivity Rises – 24 Billion Networked Devices By 2019

Mobile Connectivity Rises Mobile Technologies such as BYOD, Wearable Technology and Internet of Things are the cornerstone to strong cloud computing adoption and will continue to be the case as the number of connected devices continue to climb. In May 2015, Cisco released the complete VNI Global IP Traffic Forecast, 2014 – 2019. Global highlights…

9 Pitfalls of Providing Cloud-Based Online Government Services

9 Pitfalls of Providing Cloud-Based Online Government Services

Cloud-Based Online Government Services Pitfalls When the US government designed the Affordable Care Act, a key part of the program was to encourage enrollment through the Healthcare.gov website. This online service was supposed to make it easier for citizens to learn about the ACA, compare their health insurance options, and take full advantage of this…

IOT, Intelligent Sensors, And The Change That Is Coming…

IOT, Intelligent Sensors, And The Change That Is Coming…

Intelligent Sensors And The Future What is or isn’t connected: In the end, that is the internet of things. They, the things, represent stuff that has been around for the past 30 years. It was only recently that we have developed a way to consistently connect those devices. Despite the increasing awareness of IoT, it…

Popular Archives

Cloud Infographic – Interesting Big Data Facts

Cloud Infographic – Interesting Big Data Facts

Big Data Facts You Didn’t Know The term Big Data has been buzzing around tech circles for a few years now. Forrester has defined big data as “Technologies and techniques that make capturing value from data at an extreme scale economical.” The key word here is economical. If the costs of extracting, processing, and making use…

Five Reasons SMBs Fear The Cloud

Five Reasons SMBs Fear The Cloud

Five Reasons SMBs Fear the Cloud Fear of the cloud has been around since the Cloud began. SMBs were traditionally afraid of security issues, while large companies fretted about increasing the complexity of their IT infrastructure. What many budding start-up companies don’t realise is Cloud Computing helps place them on a level playing field with…

Sponsors

The Many Hats Of Today’s IT Managers

The Many Hats Of Today’s IT Managers

The Many Hats of IT Managers In years past, the IT department of most large organizations was much like a version of Middle Earth: a mysterious nether world where people who seemed infinitely smarter than the rest of us bustled around, speaking and typing languages that appeared indecipherable, yet, which made our world work. They…

Selling Your Business To Your Employees

Selling Your Business To Your Employees

Mobility For Your Employees It may seem a radical notion, the idea of selling your business to the people who work for you, but this is the era in which we now work. Employees of all levels are all incredibly aware of their options when it comes to mobility and employability. This doesn’t mean that…

Established in 2009

CloudTweaks is recognized as one of the leading influencers in cloud computing, big data and internet of things (IoT) information. Our goal is to continue to build our growing information portal, by providing the best in-depth articles, interviews, event listings, whitepapers, infographics and much more.

CloudTweaks Comic Library

Advertising