T-Mobile teaming up with Project Loon to help get people connected in Puerto Rico

projectloon

T-Mobile has been working to help hurricane recovery in Puerto Rico by sending engineers and equipment to the island and through its #HR4HR effort. Today T-Mo revealed another way that it’s working to help people in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria.

T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray has revealed that T-Mo is working with Project Loon to help get people connected. Project Loon is part of X, a group within Alphabet that works on “Moonshot” programs.

Project Loon uses balloons that float in the stratosphere to get limited LTE-based data and texting services to people that are in hard to reach areas without connectivity. T-Mobile’s partnership with Project Loon is now live.

Ray says that T-Mobile is also working with Vanu to roll out self-contained portable cellular network units to get voice, data, and text service out to those that need it.

Sources: T-Mobile, Project Loon

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  • SonOfACook!

    I spoke to someone whom T-Mobile sent to Puerto Rico on a NOKIA contract about four weeks ago.

    He said there’s no electrical power available. While this press release is good for Neville Ray, and his outsourced team, it’s also a perfect example of T-Mobile’s un-canny capability to troll the news headlines. Let’s give Andrew Christou a round of applause.

    • Fabian Cortez

      He said there’s no electrical power available.

      No electrical power available? Sure, 30.50% is low, but it’s definitely not 0%.

      http://estatus.pr/

      The same website states that 1,127 of the total 2,648 cell sites on the island are operational. That equates to 42.56%.

      While this press release is good for Neville Ray, and his outsourced team, it’s also a perfect example of T-Mobile’s un-canny capability to troll the news headlines. Let’s give Andrew Christou a round of applause.

      I wasn’t aware that Project Loon requires a fully functional power grid to be operational. Are the balloons somehow tethered via an electrical connection?

      • marque2

        Still seems like a silly idea, since balloons float away, and clump up. You would need tons of these to work. How long can one keep a weather balloon in the proximity of Puerto Rico in 100mph winds? An hour?

        • Fabian Cortez

          Still seems like a silly idea, since balloons float away, and clump up. You would need tons of these to work. How long can one keep a weather balloon in the proximity of Puerto Rico in 100mph winds? An hour?

          If you read the link provided in this article, you’ll see that this is a temporary solution and not meant to be used during a hurricane.

        • marque2

          My objection has to do with use during normal weather. Where weather balloons fly, normal wind speeds of 150mph are common. Unless the balloons are tethered to the ground. I don’t see how it would work.