Bill Gates has expressed doubt over Google’s plan to provide internet access to developing countries through the use of balloons. Speaking to BusinessWeek, Gates admitted that he supports “the digital revolution”, he wonders if internet is of the highest priority to those living in the areas Google are targeting:
“When you’re dying of malaria, I suppose you’ll look up and see that balloon, and I’m not sure how it’ll help you. When a kid gets diarrhea, no, there’s no website that relieves that. Certainly I’m a huge believer in the digital revolution. And connecting up primary-health-care centers, connecting up schools, those are good things.” “But no, those are not, for the really low-income countries, unless you directly say we’re going to do something about malaria.”
Google have started testing the technology, with 30 balloons recently released over New Zealand proving successful, and they aim to provide high-speed internet access to countries with poor infrastructure.