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Home » Let’s Make Connectivity Mobile – By Heading to Space: Nathan Kundtz at TEDxSeattle (Transcript)

Let’s Make Connectivity Mobile – By Heading to Space: Nathan Kundtz at TEDxSeattle (Transcript)

Nathan Kundtz – TRANSCRIPT

So this morning, I’d like to talk to you about antennas. Cue enthusiasm. Yeah. There you go. And you’re right to be enthusiastic, because it turns out — If you don’t learn anything other than that in this talk, then we’ve won. OK, so good job. You’re right to be enthusiastic, because these are so critical in how we connect and in particular the antennas that I’m designing right now will change the way the world communicates.

But before I get to that, I want to start by asking you a question: How would you feel if I asked you to give up your phone for a week? Good, how about a month? Slightly less applause. For a lot of us, that gives us stress, right? Give up my phone? I use that constantly. In fact, I’m ignoring you right now. You want to talk about antennas? When we asked people this more broadly, it turns out that a lot of people would actually rather work another day every week or even give up their vacation rather than give up their phones. It’s true. We’re so intimately connected to those phones, and it’s not just us, people. It’s projected that by 2030, we’ll have 30 billion connected devices around the planet. 30 billion — that’s four for every man, woman and child on the Earth.

But what I want to talk about today is the fact that there are some problems and limitations in the networks that we actually use to connect those devices. The first one I think you’re probably familiar with, which is that they only work if you’re in a coverage area. That’s great if you’re here in Seattle, but it turns out only about 20 percent of the Earth’s landmass is covered by broadband networks. And so if you’re outside of those networks, or if you’re on a plane or a boat, you’re out of luck. You don’t have that connectivity, and you lose all the things that it brings to our lives. But the limitations don’t stop there. Actually, inside of that twenty percent, we have another problem, called “congestion.” And congestion is when all these devices start to compete for the same spectrum.

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