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First Google Loon balloon enters Lanka’s airspace By Charumini de Silva

First Google Loon balloon enters Lanka’s airspace  By Charumini de Silva

The first Google Loon balloon equipped with telecommunication transmitting equipment entered Sri Lanka’s airspace yesterday morning from the Southern Province between Tissamaharama and Hambantota.

ICTA CEO Muhunthan Canagey said there will be a total of three balloons on Sri Lanka’s airspace by the end of this month. 

“In addition to the current balloon, two other balloons will reach country’s coast lines by the end of the month. One is currently off the East Coast of South Africa and is expected next week while the other one is expected in 12 days,” he told the Daily FT. He said a team of Google engineers will arrive in Sri Lanka during the end of this week to commence a series of tests to be performed.

For  the process and procedures to be completed the Inter-Ministerial Committee under the directives of the Economic Sub-Committee agreed that a maximum period of 12 months will be allowed for the tests. 

However, Canagey said that the Google team was quite confident that the tests would be completed within three months.

“There will be tests carried out in different parts throughout the country in order to ensure that the speeds and frequency interferences are successfully cleared. Once the tests are completed we will enter into a commercial arrangement where a company will be set up in Sri Lanka for this operation,” Canagey informed.

 

Once the tests are over there will be 13 or more balloons which will cover the whole of the country, he said.

Elaborating further on the setting up of a new entity he said, “As the new company includes a number of components Google will set it up as a BOI company under which Government will have a 25% stake.”

He went on to say that the Government will not make any investment except leasing out the spectrum for the use of providing services to the citizens of the country. The completion of the project would act as the national backbone for all the telecommunication service providers in Sri Lanka. Thereafter, all Sri Lankans will be able to enjoy high-speed internet throughout the country. 

Canagey said after signing up into the commercial arrangement, they will announce the free- wifi capacity that would be provided. “There will be limited free internet wifi. It cannot be provided unlimited.”

- Source: http://www.ft.lk/article/525614/First-Google-Loon-balloon-enters--Lanka-s- airspace#sthash.7UjScQwm.dpuf

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  • Last modified on Friday, 18 March 2016 07:07
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