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Alphabet Calls In The Balloons

The US Federal Communications Commission has approved Alphabet’s application to provide emergency cellular services to Puerto Rico with the use of its balloon technology.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico has struggled to regain communications, leaving 83 percent of cell sites out of service.

Alphabet announced its Project Loon in 2013. It uses solar-powered, high-altitude balloons to provide Internet service in remote regions. In an FCC filing, the company said it is working to “support licensed mobile carriers’ restoration of limited communications capability” in Puerto Rico.

Separately, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said his company would send more battery installers to Puerto Rico to help restore power.

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