In 2013, Google shocked us by Loon project announcement, an effort to distribute wireless connections from balloons floating 20 km above Earth. Now, as first reported by WiredGoogle’s parent company Alphabet is shutting down, apparently because it couldn’t make the whole thing commercially viable. CEO of Loon, Alistair Westgarth written in a blog post “While we found a number of willing partners along the way, we couldn’t find a way to cut costs enough to create a long-term sustainable business.”
In 2018, Loon (with Wing delivery drones) moved X projects moonshot to separate divisions within Alphabet. But now X CEO and Loon Chairman Astro Teller writes: “Despite the team’s revolutionary technical achievements over the past 9 years, the road to commercial viability has proven to be much longer and riskier than planned.