The Wall Street Journal reports that Google has successfully acquired Titan Aerospace, a startup that specialises in building high altitude drones. It was earlier reported that social media giant Facebook expressed interest in purchasing the company, but it would appear that they have been beaten to the punch by Google.
Titan Aerospace builds drones that are not only capable of cruising at a very high altitude, but also remain in flight for an extended period of time. These solar powered drones are capable of transmitting signals from the upper atmosphere and some models also possess the ability to take high resolution pictures; essentially making them cheaper alternatives to having satellites in space. Each drone is expected to be able to remain flying for up to five years.
Google has been testing balloon based transmitters to allow remote regions to access the internet, and while the Project Loon has seen encouraging results, it would appear that the internet giant is keeping its options open.