In the last twenty years, the world has only gotten smaller. Loon aims to bring more people to the digital table.

The power of the internet and its ability to bring people together across continents, borders, and communities has created an unlimited potential for opportunity and growth amongst those who can access it. We are living through an unprecedented era. Never has it been easier to communicate ideas, share values, or collaborate on innovative solutions with people and communities outside of your current location. The more people brought together through the internet, a greater potential for connectedness flourishes.

But for billions of people around the world, access to a dependable internet connection is not a current reality. 

Enter Loon, and its balloon-powered internet. 

Launched in 2013, Loon is a highly innovative company based out of Mountain View, California, and brings the internet to parts of the world through an unprecedented method: balloons.

The primary way that people access the internet is through cell towers. The farther away you get from a cell tower, the less dependable your connection is. And for billions of people who live in areas outside of cell tower coverage, getting internet service isn’t possible. So if you can’t access the internet from your location, Loon aims to bring access to you.

The primary way that people access the internet is through cell towers. The farther away you get from a cell tower, the less dependable your connection is. And for billions of people who live in areas outside of cell tower coverage, getting internet service isn’t possible. So if you can’t access the internet from your location, Loon aims to bring access to you.

The company employs balloons flying in the stratosphere to expand connectivity to unserved and underserved areas around the world. These balloons harness essential components of a cell tower, and hover 20km (12.4 miles) above the ground, well above flight trajectory, weather events, and wildlife. Made from sheets of polyethylene and incorporating solar-technology, these tennis court-sized balloons are designed to stay in flight for over 100 days, while providing access to those communities within its reach.

Loon tracks the locations of these balloons using GPS, and is able to parachute land each unit with ease, with a ground recovery team ready to collect the balloon to reuse and recycle its equipment.

Loon’s solution is a unique one. By partnering with mobile network operators around the world, the company actively expands the reach of these operators’ LTE services. This allows for the expansion of coverage to outside areas, supplements existing networks, and provides coverage after natural disasters.

Image via Loon

When Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico in 2017, Loon delivered emergency connectivity to over 200,000 people on the island while mobile networks were being repaired. Partnering with AT&T, Loon’s ability to provide access to those who needed it made a massive impact on recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria. It’s not hard to see how Loon could help other impacted communities following natural disasters or emergencies.

Loon’s creative solutions to real world problems is what makes the project such an innovative and impressive one. There is no doubt that the project will continue to bring us closer together, while also changing the way we react to dire situations. A greater degree of connectivity will only lead to a more prosperous future for us all, and with Loon broadening internet access for those who need it most, the sky is the limit for where Loon will take us.


If you’re a company like Loon, pushing the status quo of what’s possible and exploring innovative frontiers, D’Alessio Law Group is here to help as you look at global mobility strategies for the employees and executives of those companies.  

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