Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) wants to use satellites to provide Internet access to parts of the world without wire line access and plans to spend more than $1 billion doing so, according to a report published on Sunday.
Citing people familiar with the situation, the Wall Street Journal said the plan as it stands right now would include 18o small, high-capacity satellites in low orbits around Earth, but the plans could expand.
"Google and Facebook are trying to figure out ways of reaching populations that thus far have been unreachable. Wired connectivity only goes so far and wireless cellular networks reach small areas. Satellites can gain much broader access," Susan Irwin, president of Irwin Communications Inc., a satellite-communications research firm, said.
Greg Wyler, founder of satellite-communications startup O3b Networks Ltd., will lead Google’s project.