<< by on February 10th, 2010
Let’s recall some of Google’s most recent business ventures besides being the world’s biggest online search engine:
- Mobile software developer (Android operating system)
- Mobile phone manufacturer (the Nexus 1)
- Web browser developer (Chromium)
- Computer operating system developer and hardware provider (coming soon- Chrome OS)
- Social Media platform developer (Google Buzz)
And as of today, according to The Washington Post, “the company said Wednesday it is getting into the broadband service business with trials for fiber networks that will deliver Internet access speeds that are 100 times faster than what most Americans are getting today.”
Coincidentally, this announcement came one day after Eric Schmidt published an article listing the five ways in which we the United States needs to work in order to erase our innovation deficit.
In Schmidt’s article, Point Number Four:
“Fourth, information must become even more open and accessible. Government-funded research should be made public through “a Wikipedia of ideas,” so entrepreneurs can harness ideas commercially. High-speed Internet access must be much more widely available. Broadband is a major driver of new jobs and businesses, yet we rank only 15th in the world for access. More government support for broadband remains critical.”
Who’s to receive this trial as reported by The Washington Post?
“The company said in a blog that it will build fiber-to-the-home connections to a small number of locations across the country that will deliver Internet access speeds of 1 gigabyte per second. The company didn’t say what areas would be part of its experiment, but said prices would be competitive and that its network would reach at least 50,000 and potentially up to 500,000 people. A source who spoke on the condition of anonymity said the company doesn’t currently have plans to expand beyond the initial tests but will evaluate as the tests progress.”
Taking fiber straight to the house sounds very similar to what Verizon offers with thier FiOS services. Could this trial be Google’s way of putting a pinch on one of the industry’s leading service providers, perhaps trying to negotiate the purchase of pre-existing infrastructures, or just simply trying to ease their way into the market in standard Google fashion? One of the primary benefits of fiber, unlike copper, is fiber is upgradable, meaning it does not have to be replaced in order to increase speeds. Additionally, fiber allows the provider the bandwidth to carry additional services such as television programing.
Not only could this venture give Google the opportunity to see whether or not they can increase revenues for television advertising in Google AdWords, but additionally, to assign statistical effectiveness for the ads. Not being able to provide statistical marketing effectiveness has been one of the largest weaknesses of traditional marketing mediums to this day.