LTE May Make the Difference for Google's Hope to Commercialize "Loon"

Google’s Project Loon (steerable balloons to provider Internet access) appears to be making order of magnitude advances in performance, including 10  times more bandwidth, 10 times better abiltity to steer the balloons and 10 times the time afloft.



Should those sorts of advances continue, odds of a commercial launch would improve beyond the "greater than 50 percent" range Loon currently is said to enjoy. 



One key element is likely to be communications using the Long Term Evolution air interface, rather than Wi-Fi. The reason is that a Loon network would allow mobile service providers to access signals, eliminating the need for special base stations. 



Recent Loon tests have shown ability to delivery speeds up to 22 Mbps at a base station and 5 Mbps to a phone.
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