In 2017, Facebook imagined a scheme that used fixed-wing, bird-sized drones to offer high-speed web to folks residing in distant areas.
Business Insider reviews that the challenge, named Catalina (named after an island in California that makes use of pigeons to ferry messages again to the mainland) was shut down in 2018. The goal of the challenge was to make it simpler for folks residing in remoted locations to stream movies or undertake different data-intensive duties on their cell units.
The drones proposed for the Catalina challenge had been to be the scale of sparrows and would have contained solid-state drives laden with media. They had been to be the go-between step for the sign for cellphone towers and peoples’ mobiles. The drones weren’t supposed to be a substitute for cell phone networks however had been fairly a means of getting extra folks in growing nations or different zones with web entry difficulties onto their platform. Based on the BI reporting, it’s unclear whether or not prototypes of the sparrow drones was ever accomplished or whether or not the corporate merely determined it was not possible to proceed.
Around the identical interval Facebook stopped pursuing the Catalina challenge, it additionally canned the event of drones for the Aquila challenge. Aquila began in 2015 and envisioned big solar-powered drones flying at altitudes of between 58,000 – 85,000 toes, finishing three-miles circuits for months on finish whereas broadcasting free web to billions of individuals in growing nations who should not have prepared entry to the web. Facebook determined final yr, that as an alternative of growing its personal drones, it will work with companions comparable to Airbus on high-altitude web supply.
Google equally deserted its challenge to make use of big drones to broadcast web to the lots. Called Titan, the idea was ditched by Google in 2017, following various failed assessments.
To take a look at comparable tales from us, strive studying how China used dove drones for surveillance or how drones helped to relocate chicken’s nests that had been susceptible to catching on hearth in Pennsylvania.
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