Project Loon gets license to help bring back Puerto Rico cell signal
MANILA, Philippines – The US Federal Communications Commission on Friday, October 6 (October 7, Manila time), granted Alphabet's Project Loon an experimental license for operations in the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
The license will allow them to deliver emergency LTE cellular reception via helium balloon.
Wired reported the FCC will allow them to fly 30 balloons in the two locales for a 6-month period, potentially replacing thousands of cellular phone towers taken offline by the hurricane.
Engadget added that it needed to integrate with a telecommunications partner's network in the Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands to let the balloons provide voice and data service to a user's phone.
The balloons will float 20 kilometers above the earth, then relay communications between the ground stations of Alphabet, which would be connected to a local telecoms partner's network in the two areas, and the users' handsets. – Rappler.com