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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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I don't trust Google here
By AlexWade on 2/11/2010 9:58:30 AM , Rating: 5
I don't want Google giving me internet access. Google is big on tracking "anonymous" user behavior. Would you want a company who notes what internet users do to deliver you internet access? Why would Google offer a free DNS? They are a for-profit company and won't do it because they are nice people. I don't care about the speed, I rather have a slower ISP which I know doesn't actively or passively track me than a faster one which may do so.

Those who do everything do nothing well. Google needs to stop trying to do everything.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By nafhan on 2/11/2010 10:14:47 AM , Rating: 5
"He who sacrifices freedom for a really high speed internet connection deserves neither." Or something like that...

Seriously, do you really think your ISP isn't tracking what you do to some degree? Who's your ISP? I'm sure the community here can come up with some great examples of how they work to ensure your anonymity.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By IdBuRnS on 2/11/2010 10:24:02 AM , Rating: 5
You are delusional if you think your current ISP is not doing this already...

RE: I don't trust Google here
By AlexWade on 2/11/2010 10:44:44 AM , Rating: 5
I know my ISP has some tracking. But my ISP is a smaller company and they won't track my habits for profit. That is what I was referring too. I was referring to things like deep-packet inspection and not referring to tracking for legal reasons.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By namechamps on 2/11/2010 10:52:06 AM , Rating: 3
Most ISP are not "small" maybe you are lucky but most ISP are very large and due to consolidation likely will get larger in future.

Verizon: $82 billion market cap
Comcast: $43 billion
Timewarner: $31 billion

Also if you think your internet provider is only doing "tracking for legal purposes" then back to original comment you are clueless.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By Mitch101 on 2/11/2010 1:58:22 PM , Rating: 2
I think this is a bad idea for Google.

Verizon, Comcast, and Timewarner aren't getting into the search engine business but this move by Google is getting into the business of Verizon, Comcast, Windstream, AT&T, and Timewarner/RoadRunner.

I dont think this will be seen lightly by the ISP's. You can bet they will be watching every move Google makes with this.

What if ISP's suddenly blocked all routes to Google's cash cow Adsense.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By HrilL on 2/11/2010 4:21:10 PM , Rating: 2
Then they wouldn't exactly be following the principles of an free and open internet would they?

RE: I don't trust Google here
By kkwst2 on 2/11/2010 10:09:16 PM , Rating: 2
I dont think this will be seen lightly by the ISP's.

Well, isn't that the point? Verizon and AT&T have collected billions in fiber fees and then roll it out as they feel like it only to certain areas that meet their demographics.

I personally welcome anyone who is willing to try to kick them in the teeth a little. Is there an angle for Google? Obviously, but we need some different thinking to advance high speed internet to most of the country. This is the infrastructure of 21st century and it's outrageous that it's controlled by a few companies hanging on a business model from the 1970's.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By Mitch101 on 2/12/2010 2:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
I dont disagree and who wouldnt want cheaper internet but I wonder if google would be going too far with this in the eyes of the ISP's.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By Oregonian2 on 2/12/2010 4:23:02 PM , Rating: 2
The ISPs would think less of Google than their already high regard for their current competitor ISPs <snicker>?

Google would just become one of those competitors.


RE: I don't trust Google here
By A28 on 2/11/2010 11:42:45 AM , Rating: 2
Thats fine, you don't have to use google as your isp. Seeing as the network will be an open access network you will be able to choose who provides your service.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By MojoMan on 2/11/2010 12:56:21 PM , Rating: 4
I agree. I don't trust Google either, however the other posters are also correct in saying your ISP is already doing this. The problem here isn't really google. It is the government pushing for censorship of the Internet. YES, censorship is coming to the the U.S. Those of you that keep up with ISP networks already know that the NSA is installing the hardware necessary.

Google Cybersecurity Act 2009. Scary stuff.

Bow before your government overloads lest you be labeled a terrorist and thrown in prison.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By rdawise on 2/11/2010 9:39:59 PM , Rating: 2
Please stay on topic....

RE: I don't trust Google here
By Screwballl on 2/11/2010 9:55:17 PM , Rating: 2
someone has watched Echelon Conspiracy one too many times

RE: I don't trust Google here
By armulyman on 2/11/2010 10:36:54 PM , Rating: 2
You know china criticized US for the same thing the other day, the closest thing we have to censorship in this country is take downs on CP(which I would say is a good thing, dunno about you). ANOTHER issue is ACTA

There are very few things our government would wish to censor, the only real issue is terrorism. Yes I said it, terrorism, deal with it. You can say that's a scare word, but it IS an issue, I personally don't want somebody with a little knowledge and access to technology to do something to get me or somebody I know killed.

The issue is people are becoming marginalized, and this drives a higher number of people to extreme measures, and if the NSA needs to track down people on the internet that do searches for "homemade explosives" so be it. They really don't care that you watch Pr0n.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By icanhascpu on 2/12/2010 1:30:42 PM , Rating: 1
People like you that do trust Google or any company based on flimsy and near retarded reasoning are the worst. I dont trust YOUR type more than a company like google that go out of their way to be open about what they do. Something often VERY hard on a successful business model

RE: I don't trust Google here
By MojoMan on 2/24/2010 11:53:45 AM , Rating: 2
Were you replying to me? I don't trust Google. If you're referring to me trusting Google, you've got me all wrong. I was just pointing out both sides of the equation. Just wanted to make that clear

To all the ignorant people out there that think it is wrong to NOT trust the government, go read your history books. We have a right to question to government. This is healthy, and it is one of the most patriotic things one could do.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By filotti on 2/12/2010 12:19:11 AM , Rating: 2
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.

I don't thing Google is getting in the ISP business on a big scale, but I guess it depends on the results of this experiment.

I think it's a great idea to build a network with current technologies from the ground up, as it will allow us to "take a peek into the future" and see what will be possible when we all have these kinds of connections.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By jstall on 2/12/2010 12:51:38 AM , Rating: 2

You can always use Tor, or a paid proxy service.

RE: I don't trust Google here
By icanhascpu on 2/12/2010 1:32:14 PM , Rating: 3
People like you that do not trust Google or any company based on flimsy and near retarded reasoning are the worst. I dont trust YOUR type more than a company like google that go out of their way to be open about what they do. Something often VERY hard on a successful business model

By ksherman on 2/11/2010 9:57:09 AM , Rating: 4
Elgin, IL. We are an interested community. Yup, right here. EVERYONE wants it. Totally on board.

Okay, maybe its just me :-)

By therealnickdanger on 2/11/2010 10:02:50 AM , Rating: 2
*rolls dice*

C'mon Minneapolis!!!

On the one hand, I just ruined my pants, but on the other hand, Google's motives are the same as the TelCos so it's hard to trust that they won't abuse the power either. At the very least, this posturing will drive the TelCos to rethink their strategy.

By Souka on 2/11/2010 6:54:34 PM , Rating: 2
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


By Oregonian2 on 2/12/2010 4:39:22 PM , Rating: 2
No no no.... bring it here to compete with my (relatively) slow FiOS!

Verizon is abandoning us to Frontier anyway....

(Actually, demographic-wise I'm in a good area, we're one of the top places in the country in terms of adopting new technologies (silicon rainforest area near Portland Oregon -- where Intel has it's largest concentration of employees)).

By fic2 on 2/11/2010 11:53:23 AM , Rating: 2
I'm volunteering downtown Denver - specifically the building I live in. It would be great since it is the frontyard of Qwest. Google would get to compete with the babiest of the baby bells and get their feet wet.

By jstall on 2/12/2010 12:54:14 AM , Rating: 2
No.. no.. it's not just you, and if they ever decide to drop a line into middle of nowhere in RI I will step up and make the sacrifice... I will allow them to experiment on my household :)

This is not an Experiment
By siliconvideo on 2/11/2010 10:23:14 AM , Rating: 2
This is not an Experiment. Verizon already has FIOS, fiber to the home. I have the lowest cost plan available and get 20Mbps internet, all my TV channels and plain old telephone service through one little optical fiber they put in my back yard.

The biggest bottle is not the access speeds but the response time of the severs I hit.

RE: This is not an Experiment
By FITCamaro on 2/11/2010 2:07:47 PM , Rating: 2
And I believe FiOS is able to handle 100 Mbps but they don't have a need to offer that fast of speeds. I think they offer up to 50 Mbps now right? I would kill to have FiOS in my area.

RE: This is not an Experiment
By nafhan on 2/11/2010 2:35:22 PM , Rating: 2
The fiber itself can go much higher than 100Mbps. It's being limited by the hardware at either end, and - like you said - the fact that they don't need to offer anything that fast.

RE: This is not an Experiment
By rett448 on 2/11/2010 6:45:21 PM , Rating: 2
Verizon uses GPON for FIOS which has about 2.5 Gbits/s downstream and 1.2 gbit/s upstream of available bandwidth

RE: This is not an Experiment
By michaelklachko on 2/11/2010 8:32:47 PM , Rating: 2
Each of those gpon ports is split 64 or 128 ways.

RE: This is not an Experiment
By Oregonian2 on 2/12/2010 4:35:12 PM , Rating: 2
The 2.4Ghz download datarate is delivered to EVERY customer in a G-Pon system (I'm alas, on an older BPON FiOS system). Every house sees the full datarate, and only the data addressed for that customer is "picked off" and delivered to the customer-side interface.

If the system designer decided to be more DSL-like and overbook shared bandwidth, every customer could be assigned a 1-Gbps download rate that each user could "peak" at (well, two could do the full rate at once). The boxes would have to have gigabit ethernet ports rather than 100Mhz ones (like mine has anyway), but that'd be a relatively minor hardware change to the boxes.

I wonder if this is what Google has in mind. Bandwidth is going to be shared pretty strongly at the next junction upstream anyway. A neighborhood of only a thousand houses isn't going to be given a Terabit feed.

btw - At least with Verizon, I understand that in practice they split the GPON more like 32 ways and BPON more like 16 ways, even if they can do more in theory. Just stuff I've read in forums (I having FiOS), I don't know for sure.

RE: This is not an Experiment
By chrnochime on 2/11/2010 11:06:22 PM , Rating: 2
Yes they're limited by hardware at either end, and since AFAIK the current available transceivers that can be used cost effectively for broadband(uh I hate that term) consumers cannot go near Gigabit speed it's pointless to try to pass data through fiber any faster.

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.

DailyTech Reading Strategy
By jdietz on 2/11/2010 10:37:05 AM , Rating: 2
Skip directly to third paragraph. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200.

RE: DailyTech Reading Strategy
By Yawgm0th on 2/11/2010 12:09:18 PM , Rating: 2
I estimate most DT articles don't actually start until 45% in. This article is above average, if anything.

Google has to do this....
By rdhood on 2/12/2010 1:32:14 PM , Rating: 2
... because the ISPs won't.

Where I live, I am lucky to have the slowest DSL in the country. My only alternative is dial up. More than half the people in the U.S. don't have an internet connection capable of streaming HD, and there are no ISPs rushing to make it happen.

For a long time now, ISPs have not been in expansion mode. They have been in "squeeze the current system a little harder" mode. They promise bandwidth that they don't have, while tiering service to get people to do less so as not to stress their networks. Profits are not plowed back into the network, but siphoned off to stock holders and corporate salaries.

The AT&T iPhone situation in major cities is just a singular example of what is happening. Instead of increasing bandwidth, they seek to limit bandwidth in order to make make existing networks suffice. 150 million home internet users put up with the same crapola from their ISPs that iPhone users are putting up with from AT&T. Connections run at half the promised speed with no upgrades or enhancements planned.

RE: Google has to do this....
By Oregonian2 on 2/12/2010 4:54:53 PM , Rating: 2
Profits are not plowed back into the network, but siphoned off to stock holders and corporate salaries.

Don't know about AT&T, but Verizon has been plowing insanely huge amounts of money into expanding their FiOS system (which is very expensive -- it requires burying new infrastructure in the ground "from scratch") to each customer. They've basically abandoned their wireline business and is selling it to Frontier (including MY FiOS service) to concentrate their capital investments into FiOS.

AT&T probably could stop paying dividends to stockholders, but I think there would be a revolution if that happened. AT&T dividends have been paid consecutively since 1897. Some companies think their owners are important.

Not even a veiled reference to TiSP?
By Etsp on 2/11/2010 1:01:36 PM , Rating: 2
Google has mentioned becoming an ISP before, DT could probably use one of these images for this article...

(Yes, the site is satire.)

By Leper Messiah on 2/11/2010 1:58:29 PM , Rating: 1
God damnit I was going to post this. :(

By Trikat on 2/11/2010 10:00:23 AM , Rating: 2
There is a video for this network experiment presented by James Kelly (Product Manager):

I'm usually a sucker for videos, especially those with HD content (720P!)

Dont trust google!!
By icanhascpu on 2/12/2010 1:37:04 PM , Rating: 2
People like you that do not trust Google or any company based on flimsy and near retarded reasoning are the worst. I dont trust THOSE types more than a company like google that go out of their way to be open about what they do. Something often VERY hard on a successful business model

Too much?
By roostitup on 2/11/10, Rating: -1
RE: Too much?
By A28 on 2/11/2010 11:47:10 AM , Rating: 2
Fear monger much? Most of the google services you refer to have competition that provides features on par with what google offers. You have a choice to use google's services or not.

RE: Too much?
By Yawgm0th on 2/11/2010 12:24:23 PM , Rating: 2
You're afraid for the wrong reasons.

Google's data centers will one day be taken over by a rogue application. This application combined over Google's massive network will eventually become Skynet.

Google's intentions and economic impact will all be pure good, but Google will lead to the apocalypse.

RE: Too much?
By roostitup on 2/11/2010 8:35:19 PM , Rating: 1
Rated down for asking reasonable questions of Google's economic power? Wow...Wake up Google fanboys.

RE: Too much?
By kkwst2 on 2/11/2010 10:26:59 PM , Rating: 4
You were rated down because you make a relatively unreasonable rant. None of the things you list does Google come close to having a monopoly except search and even in search there are reasonable choices in Yahoo and Bing.

Doing a bunch of things pretty well is diversity, not a monopoly. You could argue whether that's a good business strategy, but there is no evidence that Google is about to take over the world. Their revenue, for example, is about a third of Microsoft.

RE: Too much?
By roostitup on 2/19/2010 9:51:42 AM , Rating: 2
I disagree. They do a diversity of things more than just pretty well, they are trying to gain control of multiple markets. There is nothing stopping them from taking over these markets. They come into markets and completely take over the competition, constantly gaining market share. Than when the competing company is down they buy them. Just like any monopoly, they have done this over and over.

Just because you have choices doesn't mean Google doesn't have a monopoly, think about it. Anti-competitive behavior is also monopolistic.

"This is from the It's a science website." -- Rush Limbaugh

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