Why Is Google Planning To Partner Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel Or BSNL For Project Loon?

Why-Is-Google-Planning-To-Partner-Jio,-Airtel-Or-BSNL-For-Project-Loon?According to DoT, there are 6,000 gram panchayats which are remote in nature and government can provide broadband connectivity either through Google’s Project Loon, IPStar or GSAT-11 satellite.

Project Loon can also be deployed for rural and remote villages as BharatNet only covers 250,000 villages but India has 638,596 villages of which 593,731 are inhabited. In toto, the villages contribute more than 70 percent of India’s population and Google cannot overlook this large population as the focus is to increase Internet population in the country which has been growing at the rate of 10-15 percent every year.

Presently, rural broadband penetration is weak irrespective of the technology as well as operators and Project Loon will perfectly fit in to strengthen the broadband network.

The growth in Internet population will definitely lead to growth in Google’s revenue from India and so the focus is on exponential growth in Internet through new technologies like Project Loon.

Project Loon is a network of balloons traveling on the edge of space, designed to connect people in rural and remote areas. It is a global network of high altitude balloons which drift higher than 18 Km, safely above the altitudes used for aviation and last for 100+ days at a time. Loon’s balloon envelopes are made from sheets of polyethylene plastic, and they measure fifteen meters wide by twelve meters tall when fully inflated.

A small box containing the balloon’s electronics hangs underneath the inflated envelope. The box contains circuit boards that control the system, radio antennas to communicate with other balloons and with Internet antennas on the ground, and lithium ion batteries to store solar power so the balloons can operate throughout the night.

There are two main radio transceivers on each balloon: a broad-coverage LTE base station (or eNodeB), and a high-speed directional link used to connect back to the Internet. Each balloon can provide connectivity to a ground area about 80 km in diameter using LTE and the Internet speeds are similar to that of current LTE/4G networks.

Globally, Project Loon began with a pilot test in June 2013 when thirty balloons were launched from New Zealand’s South Island and beamed Internet to a small group of pilot testers. The pilot test has since expanded to include a greater number of people over a wider area including California’s Central Valley and a connectivity test in Northeast Brazil.

In India, Google plans to partner with 4G operators like Reliance jio, Bharti Airtel, BSNL and Aircel as the company wants to utilize telco spectrum to connect to the baloon network directly from their phones and other LTE-enabled devices. The partnership with 4G operators will definitely help them in meeting regulatory requirements on the one hand and also help them in leveraging existing 4G device eco-system to provide broadband to consumers in rural and remote areas.

Upon commercial launch, Google will integrate baloon network with the core networks of telcos so data transmitted will have the same levels of encryption and authentication as those networks and it will also help the telcos to meet regulatory requirements.

Presently, Google is doing test flights in India and across the world to refine Loon technology and improve baloon system. It is expected that the service will be commercial within 12-24 months and telcos will definitely benefit from this complementary technology to bridge the gap in rural and remote areas to increase its reach and quality.

Also Read

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: