/Alphabet will wind down Loons internet-broadcasting balloons – Engadget

Alphabet will wind down Loons internet-broadcasting balloons – Engadget


In 2013 Google shocked us by announcing Project Loon, an effort to distribute wireless connections from balloons floating 20km above the Earth. Now, as first reported by Wired, Google’s parent company Alphabet is pulling the plug on it, apparently because it couldn’t make the whole thing commercially viable. Loon CEO Alistair Westgarth writes in a blog post that “While we’ve found a number of willing partners along the way, we haven’t found a way to get the costs low enough to build a long-term, sustainable business.”

In 2018, Loon (along with the Wing delivery drones) moved up from X moonshot projects to full-fledged divisions within Alphabet. But now X CEO and Loon chairman Astro Teller writes “despite the team’s groundbreaking technical achievements over the last 9 years, the road to commercial viability has proven much longer and riskier than hoped.”

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