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Facebook, Google Battle To Bring Internet To Remote Locations 49

jfruh (300774) writes "Facebook and Google only make money from people when they can access the Internet, so it stands to reason that they're working to make sure everyone has access. While Google's Project Loon seeks to use balloon-borne equipment, Mark Zuckerberg envisions a system of drones and laser beams."
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Facebook, Google Battle To Bring Internet To Remote Locations

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  • Re:Stupid (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Missing.Matter ( 1845576 ) on Monday March 31, 2014 @10:20AM (#46620939)
    I told my wife about the Google balloon idea and she said to me "What, you mean like in Gossip Girl?"

    Apparently there is a story line in Gossip Girl (circa 2008) where one of the main characters is convinced to invest in a project to bring internet to Africa via balloons. In the end it turns out he's a scam artist and it was all a hoax. But I guess someone at Google saw it and said "Now wait a minute..."
  • Living in Africa (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 31, 2014 @11:06AM (#46621395)

    I live in Northern Mozambique in Africa. Our NGO pays $1000 (USD) per month for a 1Mb/s symmetrical dedicated line. It's delivered via fiber, even out here. The incumbent state-owned provider is over $2000/month for a 1Mb/s copper line. The only other option is VSAT but that's 10:1 contention or higher unless you want to pay $8k/month or more. VSAT with contention is unusable during the day.

    We don't need balloons, we just need fiber terminations with reasonable fees. If we could get 10Mb/s for $500 that would transform the country.

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