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Global Telcos Want Flying Mobile Phone Antennae

TOKYO: Proposals by Alphabet and SoftBank to launch flying mobile phone antennae high into the atmosphere have received backing from global telecommunications companies.

Loon, which was spun out of Alphabet’s business incubator, and HAPSMobile, a unit of SoftBank’s domestic telco, plan to deliver high speed Internet to remote areas by flying network equipment at high altitudes via balloons or drones.

The two companies formed an alliance last year and have since been joined by aerospace firm Airbus, network vendors Nokia and Ericsson and telcos China TelecomDeutsche TelekomTelefonica and Bharti Airtel.

The alliance will lobby for spectrum and industry-wide standards for network equipment carried by the drones and balloons.



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