Alphabet (Google) is winding down Project Loon, which was aimed at creating a network of wireless Internet connections using stratospheric balloons. The closure of the ambitious program is announced on the project’s official website.
Loon CEO Alastair Westgarth attributes the decision to the fact that the company failed to find enough partners and investors. In addition, the project was never able to reduce costs low enough to build a long-term, sustainable business.
“Developing radical new technologies is inherently risky,” Westgarth concluded.
Project Loon was successfully tested as early as last year. For example, 35 balloons were launched in Kenya, where they operated on the networks of a local mobile operator. Each balloon provided up to 80 square kilometers of coverage.