Google is working hard to push its idea of delivering internet service through balloons soon. But at the time when the technology in question is to go through a crucial test, some of the prospective customers are still in doubts about the practicality of the technology.
Loon, the company behind that effort, said that to commercially test technology for the first time its balloons are reaching Kenya this week that will be conducted with the nation’s third largest carrier Telkom Kenya. In the commercial trial of the technology, consumers living in the mountain villages will be offered with 4G service at prevailing prices for a period that is still to be defined. Final approval to conduct the test would be signed this month, said Kenya’s aviation authority.
In 2011, Loon was established with intentions of bringing connectivity to those remote parts of the world where cell towers could be an expensive option to build by providing network services through floating networking gears powered by solar energy.
Lon’s helium balloons having size equivalent to a tennis court have already confirmed their usefulness as over the last three years, company remained successful offering free of cost replacement to wireless carriers in Puerto Rico and Peru for using its balloons to replace their cell phone towers that were downed by natural disasters in those countries.
Officials in Kenya are keen and putting all their efforts in bringing more citizens online.
But executives at five other wireless network service providers invited by Loon in four countries are not showing confidence in the Loon’s technology as they told Reuters that Loon have not the right solution currently and it may never have. Those companies, including French giant Orange SA, Vodafone New Zealand and Telkom Indonesia, say Loon must have to demonstrate the reliability, safety and profitability of its technology for the telecom companies.