Google Searching for Cities to Bring High Speed Fiber Optic Broadband

by jhwygirl

Well, the internets were abuzz yesterday with news that Google intends to start its own fiber optic broadband network, in a small-scale (500,000 households), with the intent of showing it can be done and jumpstarting competition among the bigger network players like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon.

Bob Jaffe’s liserve picked up on the offer, and you can follow the thread, starting with that post. Jaffe did make a comment later in that thread, saying that the administration was looking at it.

I know a number of Missoulians filled out Google’s request for information, me being one of them. I certainly want google to know that Missoula supports a project like this, and I’ll cross my fingers in hopes that Missoula proves to be ideal testing grounds for their test project.

There are large areas of Montana that are underserved – if served at all – by high speed anything internet. Bresnan’s proposal to expand high-speed internet access in the state, using stimulus funds, was rejected, which was unfortunate. Not only would it have expanded service to areas currently without high-speed internet, it would have increased competition in some areas where no competition exists.

Rural telecoms blasted the proposal.

With western Montana’s economy changing – moving from an extraction-based logging economy to we-don’t-seem-to-know-what-yet economy – having the infrastructure of 1GB/second internet availability provides a great base to enhance our potential for medical and technological-based jobs. Having UM here only enhances that potential.

Community orgs are encouraged to fill in that proposal also. There are many small orgs and companies here in Missoula that truly operate on a world-wide basis. I hope that they, too, take the time to fill out Google’s RFI and explain how this kind of service here would enhance both their business and this community.

I also hope that other communities throughout the state take notice, too. Many areas could benefit from something like this. Lewistown? Havre? Glasgow? Libby? Dillon? The list is endless.

Montanans? Get to work. Put Montana on Google’s radar.


  1. It’s really a government function, “infrastructure” I think they call it. Other countries are light years ahead of us because we are waiting for the private sector to find profit in non-segmented product delivery.

    Google is a little different than the rest -there is still some rebellion in management ranks, It will be interesting to watch.




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