Sonnet Labs, a Toronto-based technology company, has developed a system that allows for the connected luxuries of a city anywhere in the world. The company's eponymous gadget gives users' smartphones the ability send instant messages, voice recordings, images, and GPS coordinates, even in areas where there's no cell coverage, satellite service, or internet access.
The seemingly miraculous gadget enables makeshift internet connectivity through the use of a much older technology. Sonnet Labs devices can connect to smartphones via short-range Wi-Fi. Each Sonnet then connects to other Sonnets via traditional long-range radio frequencies, achieving sending distances of up to five kilometers.
Though Sonnet Labs' tech won't allow users to connect to the internet as a whole, it effectively creates its own internet among the devices within range. That means that as long as the user has data stored locally (e.g. pictures they've taken on their phone, GPS coordinates their phone automatically gathers, or text messages they've composed themselves,) they can send it to any other Sonnet user.