Look Out, Comcast: Google Fiber Could Be Coming to a City Near You
Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) ultra high-speed Internet project called Google Fiber has invited 34 additional cities to discuss the possibility of building a gigabit Internet network, according to an announcement made by Milo Medin, the vice president of Google Access Services, on Wednesday. Google’s gigabit Internet service, which the company says is 100 times faster than the average broadband connection, is currently being tested in Provo, Utah; Austin, Texas; and Kansas City, Missouri.
Cities being considered for the expansion include Nashville, Tennessee; Portland, Oregon; San Jose, California; Phoenix, Arizona; and Atlanta, Georgia, among others. Medin said that these cities were chosen because they have “made high-speed broadband a pillar of their economic development plans.”
San Antonio’s mayor, Julian Castro, has said that he wants gigabit Internet available in that city’s classrooms by 2020. “Access to adequate broadband for digital learning is not a luxury — it’s a necessity for students to have a chance to compete. As jobs and capital migrate to places where workers have digital-age skills, our students, our children, will fall short without access to the broadband capacity they need for digital-age learning,” Castro said in an op-ed written last summer for The Express-News.
It’s no news that consumers are currently using more bandwidth than ever, which is clogging up traditional broadband services. It’s also no news that consumers hate dealing with traditional broadband providers. Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), which is one of the nation’s largest broadband Internet providers, is also one of the country’s most-hated companies in satisfaction polls.
Some very recent changes have put consumers even more on edge about broadband service. The death of net neutrality means that Internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon (NYSE:VZ) now are allowed by law to throttle certain kinds of content, while before, all sites on the Web were required by law to be given the same service by ISPs.