Comcast should be looking over their shoulder right about now. Google has announced four new metro areas that will be getting Google Fiber, including four metro areas that cover 18 different cities in the Southeast.
If you live in Atlanta, Georgia, Charlotte or Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, or Nashville, Tennessee, good news! You are finally getting the most anticipated technology upgrade of the decade.
Google Fiber has been slowly creeping its way across the US, with current service in Provo, Utah, Austin, Texas, and Kansas City, Missouri. But their move into new territories has been a bit slow, even if their plans for expansion are growing by the day.
The Sweating Competition
Over the last couple of years, companies like Comcast and Time Warner (now a potential part of Comcast as we wait for a ruling on their merger) have made some ridiculously stupid statements. Mainly that Americans “don’t need” high speeds in their internet service.
This claim was in direct response to Google Fiber, which was still rather small at the time. It was possibly the most inane and lazy response that could have been given. Instead of actually trying to improve their service and offer more, Comcast has decided to compete through trying to convince customers that they don’t want better internet.
Well, that and intense lobbying and expansion through major acquisitions, like the aforementioned Time Warner buyout.
Now, Google Fiber is not only getting bigger, but people are begging them to come to their city. It isn’t only in a bid for gigabit fiber, but as a way to break from the dominating force that is Comcast.
They are a company with a terrible reputation for throttling speeds, sending out shady copyright notices on content downloaded to your computer (even if it wasn’t on their ISP), and customer service so bad that it has caused controversy again and again.
Why It All Matters
You may be wondering why I am using a Google Fiber article as a platform to bash Comcast. It is relevant, I promise. Google Fiber and the demand for it signals a change in ISP’s that is very timely.
The existence of telecommunications supergiants like Comcast and Verizon speak to both the monopoly of the industry, and the power they hold. Issues like Net Neutrality have provided a very stark look at the potential future of these companies, and their political positions.
Google Fiber is valid competition, unlike the many small ISP’s that have crept up in single cities around the US, and are often crushed within a couple of years.
In addition to the implications on the business end, we have the service changes this will bring. Google Fiber promises – and has proven – speeds of up to 100 times faster than current high speed internet service. It is pretty much the next generation, and if they can break through it gives us a different standard.
Hopefully, it also paves the way in the early days for other companies to rise up and secure a spot in the market. Before Google become one of the new monopolies, just as they did with Android.