Google has officially announced what had already become an open secret: that Austin, Texas, will be its next "Google Fiber" city, where the online ad peddler will offer gigabit internet connections to homes and institutions. Soon after Google's announcement, AT&T chimed in with a copycat communiqué – albeit one with caveats. …
Look at those prices and inclusions. It brings a tear to my eye.
@Mike Echo: No lie my friend!
I don't think anyone will stand behind Google's privacy conditions, but I can't see anyone standing in their way of shaking down major telcos...finally. I will say though, that for an extra 50usd a month for an even longer contract time just over their TV box, well, you're probably getting screwed.
Also, does anyone know what the monopoly agreements are for XYZ areas? Yes I know that is a vague question, but in my city, apparently they are not allowed "in". Is it something like if your area already has 2 or 3 competitors, a 4th may be legally denied entry?
For cable TV it's probably defined in the local contract, but for data, monopoly arrangements probably depend on the thickness of brown envelopes handed to the local utilities commissioners by the incumbents.
Eh, it's all probably a ruse to get comped on some South by Southwest passes......
Not a bad idea actually!!
Hopefully the surrounding areas will be included as well. If not by Google but by AT&T; both would be very nice though.
It would almost be cheaper to get a cheap apartment, get the 1Gbps fiber and run a data center out of it than to pay for Colo space.
Google keeping Austin weird?
My civilian employer is based in Austin (we're not a tech company either, before you ask. I don't work for TI or anyone cool like that. We're a grocery store. If you know Austin and companies headquartered there, you probably know who I mean over on Bowie) and I can see us selling our souls to the Goog without the CIO and board thinking too much about it, unless it invites extra scrutiny from the 30 or so Government regulators we deal with. I can also see it being a nightmare for the regional technicians like myself trying to play nice with a patchy new network to the mothership and a large number of us getting very pissed off at it.
But hell, maybe I'm wrong, maybe it'll work like a dream. Maybe it'll hand out twenty dollar bills and shit rainbows. I don't know, I haven't heard any complaints from subscribers in Kansas City, but then again, I don't know anyone on Google's fiber service, presumably because of the build costs. Which actually kind of bother me, maybe its a Floridian thing but AT&T didn't directly charge users a fee on top of their subscriptions to install U-Verse here three years ago, they even had to negotiate new right of way for quite a bit of it, and Time Warner didn't force anyone to pay extra for their initial digital cable offering in 1999. Hell, they tried their best to keep it a grey secret until they could reliably compete with BellSouth's xDSL and ISDN services as well as have better uptimes and less issues than Time Warner's own analog cable system on the TV side of things.
Regardless, the first six months or so of Cable internet service were great, I was the only person in my zip code that had it and my sustained download speeds were higher than a T1 line (until other people started subscribing to it and ruined speeds as well as the cool factor), which was certainly something to my angsty 17 year old self.
But yes, for comparison's sake everyone I know out in KC all seem to have Time Warner, AT&T or Comcast as well as the usual slew of mobile providers, so I'm intrigued about how well Google Fiber really works before I get directly affected by it with the Austin rollout.
Re: Google keeping Austin weird?
Oh well nevermind, a quick glance at their FAQ says this:
"We are currently focused on our Fiber-to-the-home network, which is for residential consumers. For businesses located in qualified fiberhoods, we plan to introduce a small business offering shortly—stay tuned to google.com/fiber for more details"
So good, it won't be a problem for me if the damn thing keels over on itsself.
Re: Google keeping Austin weird?
It might not be a problem for you, but it would be a problem for us that are not satisfied with our current inet connections at home. I'm glad you're sitting pretty, but for a lot of us at home, any competition to the current offerings is a blessing, especially when you consider what we pay for what we are getting!
I sit here knowing factually that I'm paying more for a ~100x slower download connection than some in the nation. Of course, when what I really want is to expand my projects across the internet, I go from feeling shafted to straight out accosted by my ISP with my even more pathetic upload speed.
God bless any company right now for trying to set a higher bar on ISP speeds...god bless!
Re: Google keeping Austin weird?
Competition helps. My Brighthouse connection in Orlando was total shit until Comcast and AT&T showed up, now it is merely piss-poor, but I do get 1mb/sec on occasion now. Obviously AT&T's announcement shows they're worried even though they apparently have no idea what to do except "do the same thing"
I used to have an AT&T landline until they started calling 2-3 times a day about U-Verse and wouldn't stop. I do hope Google bends 'em over really hard and drives a robot car right up there.
 total shit as in I couldn't play multiplayer on XBOX Live w/o dropping games and being accused of cheating by Bungie. On "broadband" cable.
all I will say is god damn....
I'll be paying almost what they are charging for my 20mbit connection, and WAS paying that prior to AT&T(aka the crappiest ISP on the planet) for 1Mbps ADSL about a year ago...
Is it sad I would trust google more with my privacy then I trust my current ISP or AT&T?
Wish the googleian overlords would grace my city next
Good to hear
I applaud Google for announcing it's bringing it's' Fiber to service in Austin. It will greatly change things there for the better.
I'm not seeing what AT&T is up to by demanding investment incentives from the public sector. Google are presumably making no such demands, and I am 100% certain that nobody gives a flaming shit whether or not AT&T enter the market.
It just seems that these shitty companies have a pathological need to lay a fresh turd into the centre of any new deal - even when it's apparently directly to the detriment of the business plan.
You don't get it, AT&T!
Yes, the point of Google Fiber is to encourage you to start similar projects. But it would be vastly better for everybody if you actually do it, in other cities. Not just say "I could do that in the same place".
Any chance of them popping over to the UK in the near future? Be a happy and willing guinea pig if they're looking for somone...