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Google is looking for communities to participate in the experiment

Google started out as a search engine that was the new kid on the block fighting against the big firms like Yahoo for a piece of the market. As time went by, Google became the most popular search engine online in many countries including the U.S. and it runs the most successful advertising program online giving it an enormous amount of cash to spend on other projects.

Since the early days, Google has continually added to the things that it offers and does. It has moved from a search firm to being a software firm with offerings competing against Microsoft and more. With the unveiling of the Nexus One, Google started selling phones directly to customers. With Google Wave and Google Voice, the company stepped into the communications and collaboration markets as well starting the transformation into a telecommunications firm for the search giant.

Google has now announced its next big plan to add to its offerings and bring new services to its users. Google announced on its official blog a new experimental plan for a fiber network that will bring huge increases in internet speeds to the public.

Google outlines its vision for the fiber network in the blog post, "Imagine sitting in a rural health clinic, streaming three-dimensional medical imaging over the web and discussing a unique condition with a specialist in New York. Or downloading a high-definition, full-length feature film in less than five minutes. Or collaborating with classmates around the world while watching live 3-D video of a university lecture. Universal, ultra high-speed Internet access will make all this and more possible."

Google is planning to build and test a new ultra-high speed fiber optic broadband network in a small number of trial locations across America. The network will be capable of delivering speeds over 100 times faster than most people in the country have access to today at 1Gbps. The blazing speed will be offered using a fiber-to-the-home connection.

Google claims that it plans to offer connectivity to anywhere from 50,000 to 500,000 users at a competitive price. The goal of the experiment is to see what sort of apps developers can come up with when there is a huge amount of bandwidth. Google also wants to test new ways to build fiber networks and help inform and support similar deployments in other parts of the world. The network it creates will offer open access with a choice of multiple service providers.

The announcement today marks the first step in the new program with a request for information to help find interested communities. Google is welcoming responses from local governments and citizens. Those interested in the program can respond to Google on a page set up for the experiment. Responses will be collected until March 26. After that date Google will announce the communities it plans to target later in 2010 for the network installations. Google reports that it has urged the FCC to look for new and novel ways to get broadband to more of the country as part of the National Broadband Plan and the experiment is its contribution to the effort.



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Where's the advancement for the business sector?
By Yawgm0th on 2/11/2010 12:22:19 PM , Rating: 2
Between DOCSIS 3.0, FioS, and now this, American consumers are finally seeing some major advancements in Internet access.

Where's the love for business? To this day, getting a guaranteed, reliable business line is outrageously expensive for ridiculously low bandwidth. I mean, T1 lines are extremely slow, even for business purposes, but it costs anywhere from $200/month to a $1000/month to get a good T1 line. An optical carrier or Ethernet network will have even more ridiculous pricing. A $100/month (give or take) 50/10 Comcast connection provides 33.3~ times the download bandwidth and 6.6~ times the upload bandwidth of a T1. The Comcast Business line at a lower speed still provides 10-20 times the download bandwidth and 2-5 times the upload bandwidth of that same T1. The T1 is marginally more reliable, at best.

I get that there needs to a premium, even a huge premium, for business Internet access with SLA including guaranteed uptime, but it's getting out of hand. The pricing/bandwidth ratio has been virtually stagnant for nearly a decade.

This concludes my slightly topic-related rant.




RE: Where's the advancement for the business sector?
By Ananke on 2/11/2010 1:42:46 PM , Rating: 2
My father, who lives in a less wealthy part of Eastern Europe, has GB Ethernet Internet for around $7 a month. Last time there I torrented a 700 MB file for around one minute. In the States, same file over Comcast cable took me 4 hours :) on a $100 dollar broadband service.

US seems to be a century behind most developed countries - tech wise. It is still better then Central Africa though :):):)


By FITCamaro on 2/11/2010 2:03:22 PM , Rating: 2
You can thank the US government for that. They're the ones who gave mandated monopolies to service providers.


By albundy2 on 2/12/2010 6:31:07 AM , Rating: 2
i was just thinking about that... is google going to run into the same brick wall verizon ran into?


By Yawgm0th on 2/11/2010 2:16:53 PM , Rating: 2
Assuming you mean 1gbps here, since data rates are generally measured in bits, not bytes. Also, the speed you just described is just shy of 100mbps, but that probably due to Bittorrent, not a connection limitation. Hell, at 1gbps you start to see throughput bottlenecks caused by the internal storage more than network bottlenecks.

For the record, 700MiB takes me just under two minutes. Honestly, that's pretty darn decent. But at just over $100/month, it's ridiculous when people in other countries get two to twenty times that speed for less money. I live in a metropolitan area with around three million people in a ~55-mile radius, so the population density excuse doesn't really cut it.

We are definitely behind in terms of Internet connections -- maybe not "tech wise", but definitely Internet. My complaint is more aimed at the business sector, where the costs are outrageous for the poor data rates we see. The same money would literally get the bandwidth multiplied by several thousand in certain countries.


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