British Airways mounts funding push for Beacon in a Backpack which aims to connect third-world societies online

British Airways (BA) is seeking to raise £50,000 on funding to build a prototype of its Beacon in a Backpack, created in an effort to connect remote third-world societies online.

The idea for the backpack was generated on board the BA Ungrounded tech innovation flight that flew from London to San Francisco last year, with a number of tech innovators brought on board to develop ideas to fight social injustice.

Glenn Morgan, head of service transformation at British Airways Transformation and Jen Padgett, executive director of the Community Technology Alliance, were paired together, and developed the idea for the backpack, which would contain a tablet, a Raspberry Pi, a solar cell for power and a beacon which could send out a wireless Internet signal for half a mile and allow travellers to set up an Internet connection in remote parts of the world.

The idea would be used to help further innovation and connect families and communities online, explained Padgett.

BA was exhibiting a non functioning prototype at SXSW alongside a demonstration video, in order to generate awareness at the tech festival.

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