Actually the plan is not that evil. It’s not even quasi-evil.
The Goog wants to put into orbit around 180 small, low-orbit satellites that would bring internet to rural areas of the world–allowing Old Macdonald to check-in on the Facebook status of his cows.
“Google and Facebook are trying to figure out ways of reaching populations that thus far have been unreachable,” said Susan Irwin, president of Irwin Communications Inc., a satellite-communications research firm. “Wired connectivity only goes so far and wireless cellular networks reach small areas. Satellites can gain much broader access.”
Why? The money! It’s always about the money.
While those folks in hard to reach areas might appreciate no longer having to deal with dial-up, Google is not going to spend over a billion dollars, unless it believes there is far more than that available in advertising dollars. Whether the inhabitants of Green Acres will set up their AdWords accounts, is debatable, however, the faster they can browse the web, the more ads they may click on.
Unfortunately, history doesn’t bode well for Google. Microsoft has already “been there and done that!”
Teledesic, backed by Microsoft Corp. and telecommunications entrepreneur Craig McCaw, considered using drones to provide additional capacity for the satellite system in some areas, he said. The more than $9 billion project halted satellite assembly in 2002 amid technical hurdles and cost overruns.
Rumors that this is all just an attempt to provide better GPS navigation for Google’s driving cars have yet to be confirmed.