Friday, March 26, 2010

Next steps for our experimental fiber network

(Cross-posted from the Official Google Blog.)

Since we announced our plans to build experimental, ultra high-speed broadband networks, the response from communities and individuals has been tremendous and creative. With just a few hours left before our submission deadline, we've received more than 600 community responses to our request for information (RFI), and more than 190,000 responses from individuals (we'll post an update with the final numbers later tonight). We've seen cities rename themselves, great YouTube videos, public rallies and hundreds of grassroots Facebook groups come to life, all with the goal of bringing ultra high-speed broadband to their communities.

We're thrilled to see this kind of excitement, and we want to humbly thank each and every community and individual for taking the time to participate. This enthusiasm is much bigger than Google and our experimental network. If one message has come through loud and clear, it's this: people across the country are hungry for better and faster Internet access.

So what's next? Over the coming months, we'll be reviewing the responses to determine where to build. As we narrow down our choices, we'll be conducting site visits, meeting with local officials and consulting with third-party organizations. Based on a rigorous review of the data, we will announce our target community or communities by the end of the year.

Of course, we're not going to be able to build in every interested community — our plan is to reach a total of at least 50,000 and potentially up to 500,000 people with this experiment. Wherever we decide to build, we hope to learn lessons that will help improve Internet access everywhere. After all, you shouldn't have to jump into frozen lakes and shark tanks to get ultra high-speed broadband.

Thanks again to all the communities and citizens that submitted a response. We feel the love, and we're honored by your interest.

Update at 5:26pm: The response deadline has now passed. We've received more than 1,100 community responses and more than 194,000 responses from individuals. This map displays where the responses were concentrated as of 1:30pm PT. Each small dot represents a government response, and each large dot represents locations where more than 1,000 residents submitted a nomination. We plan to share a complete list of government responses and an updated map soon.


Jeremy said...

Thanks for the update about your broadband project. I'd love to hear about your decision-making process, and how you choose the communities you will invest in.

I hope that whatever community you choose has a good community of individuals and developers, willing to take advantage of the network. After all, your network (I hope) is not a so much a service as a platform.

I appreciate some of the specifics of your plan, such as open access and non-discriminatory traffic management. Make sure that principles such as these do not dissolve.

Again, thank you Google. Oh, and go Vermont. ;]

Sterling said...

Love this blog. As a federal employee, I'm looking for some help.

Thousands of federal contract specialists (like me) faces the problem of a horrible search tool we have to use for finding acquisition regulations.(

I'm looking to connect w/ one of Google's software engineers. Hopefully, this problem can easily be solved like the old search for US Patent & Trade Office (i.e.

It could also generate good PR for Google.

Can you help?

MichiganMARKER said...

Where ever this is built, I can not wait to visit.

Ron said...

As our neighbor we would love to have your service and be able to offer it to all our residents and business.

Ron Swegles
Council Member
City of Sunnyvale

Craig Settles said...

I'm not naming my first born Google or Topeka, but nevertheless I am spearheading a national movement to unite all the communities that replied to your RFI, and help bring broadband to more cities and towns -

I believe this answers the question a lot of people have, which is, where do we go from here? 200,000 people are a lot of folks to get so excited about broadband that they write letters and do all kinds of goofy stuff to get it. But let's face it, most of these people aren't going to catch the brass ring.

People should check us out if they want to make the most of all the work they've put into the RFI.