The Nation



Facebook to use drones to connect the world

San Francisco - Facebook is planning for a world free of internet dead spots.

The ambitious social networking giant announced a plan Thursday to "build drones, satellites and lasers to deliver the internet to everyone."

"We’ve been working on ways to beam internet to people from the sky," Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said in a posting. "Our goal ... is to make affordable access to basic internet services available to every person in the world."

The effort is being made through the Facebook-led initiative Facebook is developing the new technology through its newly established Connectivity Lab, which includes experts from NASA and from Ascenta, a British-based company that builds unmanned, solar-powered aircraft.

Connectivity Lab plans to use satellites to cover large regions with internet, and solar-powered drones for more specific areas.

Both methods would apply technology called free-space optical communication, which uses light to transmit data through space using invisible, infrared laser beams.


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