Facebook's internet-beaming drone is ready for testing2015-07-30 17:17 by Daniela
Tags: Facebook, Aquila
Facebook today introduced Aquila, a unmanned, 140-foot, solar-powered plane that will bring basic internet access to the developing world. An actual version of the plane was built in the United Kingdom and Facebook plans to test it, probably somewhere in the United States, later this year.
Each 1,000 lb. plane would spend three months aloft providing broadband-level Internet for people in a 50-mile radius below. Then it will float down to earth for refit.
Facebook plans to work with carriers around the world to equip them with these drones so they can sell Internet connectivity to the 10% of the population in remote areas out of reach of existing mobile networks.
"Our intention is not to be an operator" Facebook's VP of engineering Jay Parikh told an assembly of reporters. "We're not going to be ‘Facebook ISP.'"
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