Facebook 'Experimenting' with Low Earth Orbit Satellites for Internet Access

· · Cool Stuff Found

Facebook is “experimenting” with some LEO (low Earth orbit) satellites to connect the huge part of the world that remains without Internet access. After all, there are more than three billion products out there waiting to be sold, and Facebook wants to be the company that taps into all that merchandise those people. Wired did the footwork on this story, tracking down emails between the FCC and a lawyer representing Facebook through subsidiaries, but Facebook owned up to it when directly asked by the magazine. When I said “experimenting,” though, it really is an experiment. Facebook has been looking for ways to get the rest of the world connected for many years. Past experiments have included both a geosynchronous satellite (that blew up) and solar-powered gliders that didn’t work out. A network of up to thousands of LEO satellites, however, could do it.

Facebook ‘Experimenting’ with Low Earth Orbit Satellites for Internet Access

A Fantasy Conversation: Bezos and Cook Chat About Amazon Echo

· · Particle Debris

Tim Cook and Jeff Bezos.

Two very interesting things happened this week. First, we heard that Apple may be making its own Siri-powered Echo-like device, to be announced at WWDC. Later in the week, we heard that Amazon will now bring its video app, Prime Video to the Apple TV. Mere coincidence? John, just for fun, imagines a recent, fictional conversation between Jeff Bezos and Tim Cook.

Apple Hires Satellite Experts away from Google

· · Analysis

Satellite with an Apple logo

Apple has hired away a pair of Google’s top satellite experts, according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. Citing unnamed sources, Mr. Gurman reported that Apple hired John Fenwick, who previously led Google’s spacecraft operations, and Michael Trela, head of satellite engineering at Google. They are part of a new hardware team at Apple headed by another former Googler, Dropcam cofounder Greg Duffy.