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Google to beam in wireless internet where Fiber would be too expensive
For the last five years, Google Fiber has been making traditional internet service providers shake in their boots all across the US. However, those serving more rural areas have felt pretty secure in their quasi-monopolies since the infrastructure construction required to bring Fiber into these areas would just be a financial nightmare for the search giant. It seemed like ISP’s could kind of kick up their boots and relax out in the sticks. That is, until now.
Today in an interview with Re/code, senior vice president of Alphabet Craig Barratt explained that Alphabet is planning on providing fixed wireless internet to places where Fiber would be too expensive to roll out. Barratt, who oversees Alphabet’s Access and Energy division and Fiber-related projects, said that the company is “experimenting with a number of different wireless technologies” to make this vision a reality.
Historically, the kind of wireless networks that have aimed to replace cable in places where running out physical lines wasn’t feasible have proven to be significantly slower than their landline counterparts. But Google is experimenting with some innovative wireless technology, and they recently filed with the Federal Communications Commission to gain authorization to use spectrum in the 3.5GHz band. The company is already testing this technology in Kansas City, which is the first place to ever get the company’s much-lauded gigabit-per-second internet service.
This appears to be a fairly bold initiative to continue to push for a totally online world (although not quite so bold as Project Loon). Whether or not it pans out or on what kind of timeline remain to be seen, and Barratt was careful to avoid any specifics in this regard. Nevertheless, it looks like we can expect Google-backed internet services in more and more places in the near future. Let us know what you think of the feasibility of Alphabet’s wireless ambitions for rural America in the comments below, and be sure to stay tuned to Android Authority for more details.