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Amazon Working to Bring Inclusive Internet with 3,236 Satellites

Social networking giant Facebook is also developing an Internet satellite of its own, the report noted

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Google , US, Alexa, Amazon, Drones, e-commerce
The logo of Amazon, online retailer is seen at the company logistics center in Lauwin-Planque, France. VOA

In a bid to provide Internet to the “unserved and underserved communities around the world”, Amazon is working to launch a constellation of 3,236 satellites into low-Earth orbit.

The project “Kuiper” will consist of 784 satellites at an altitude of 367 miles from the earth, 1,296 satellites at 379 miles and 1,156 satellites at 391 miles — facilitating Internet availability to over 95 per cent of the earth’s total population.

“Project ‘Kuiper’ will provide low-latency, high-speed broadband connectivity to unserved and underserved communities around the world,” The Verge quoted an Amazon spokesperson as saying on Friday.

“This is a long-term project that envisions serving tens of millions of people who lack basic access to broadband Internet.”

Moving forward with the initiative, the project has already filed with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) — the international organisation in charge of coordinating satellite orbits.

Even though Amazon Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos has his own spaceflight company called “Blue Origin”, the company is considering all other options as well.

Amazon logo. Wikimedia

Details on whether the company intends to build its own satellites or buy them from a third party remain unclear as of now.

“There’s no time-frame for when Amazon’s satellites might be sent into orbit, but it will need to receive the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) approval before it can do so,” the report added.

Also Read- LG Says Q1 Operating Profits May Decline Over 18%

Apart from Amazon, other tech majors have also lately been working with satellites.

Elon Musk-owned SpaceX has plans to launch as many as 12,000 satellites as part of its “Starlink” constellation and London-based global communications company “OneWeb” wants to launch 650 satellites to implement new space-based Internet communication systems.

Social networking giant Facebook is also developing an Internet satellite of its own, the report noted. (IANS)

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Microsoft, Amazon in Race For $10bn Pentagon Project

The DoD is likely to announce the winner this month

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Amazon, online retailer, Drones
The Amazon warehouse in San Fernando de Henares is seen during a 3-day walkout to demand better wages and working conditions, on the outskirts of Madrid, Spain. VOA

The Pentagon has selected Microsoft and Amazon Web Services (AWS, the cloud computing arm of Amazon, as two finalists for its $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract, as Oracle missed the bus.

The JEDI Cloud computing contract at the US Department of Defence (DoD) is aimed to bring the entire military under the envelope of a single Cloud provider.

The project saw backlash from several quarters including employees at tech giants like Google and Microsoft, alleging that the “contract is massive in scope and shrouded in secrecy, which makes it nearly impossible to know what we as workers would be building”.

Succumbing to pressure from employees, Google last year dropped its bid to be part of the JEDI contract.

“After evaluating all of the proposals received, the Department of Defence has made a competitive range determination for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud request for proposals, in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

Microsoft
Logo of Microsoft outside it’s office. Pixabay

“The two companies within the competitive range will participate further in the procurement process,” Elissa Smith, DoD spokesperson for Public Affairs Operations told TechCrunch on Thursday.

The DoD is likely to announce the winner this month.

Last year, Microsoft employees raised ethical questions on facilitating incorporation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) on weapons, illegal surveillance and technologies that could cause “overall harm”.

Also Read- Facebook Planning To Merge All Its Platforms Into One

“We need clear ethical guidelines and meaningful accountability governing how we determine which uses of our technology are acceptable, and which are off the table.

“Microsoft has already acknowledged the dangers of the tech it builds, there is no law preventing the company from exercising its own internal scrutiny and standing by its own ethical compass,” a letter by Microsoft employees detailed. (IANS)