There wasn't any big media celebration when Wilmington, North Carolina was chosen to test the now-present digital TV transmission a whole year before it went nationwide. The city is now testing the market for White Space left over by the digital transition, providing free, public Internet access to anyone in a specific area.
But what's really making news is how cities across the nation are rallying to get first dibs on Google's intent to build an Internet Service Provider, aka Google Fiber. "Google is planning to build, and test ultra-high speed broadband networks in a small number of trial locations across the country," the company says here in its project overview.
"We'll deliver Internet speeds more than 100 times faster than what most Americans have access to today with 1 gigabit per second, fiber-to-the-home connections," the company added. "We'll offer service at a competitive price to at least 50,000, and potentially up to 500,000 people. "
So began a media frenzy. Cities of all sizes nationwide have spared no expense to capture Google's attention, and Zettaphile has captured some of the magic on its website, highlighting efforts by Columbia, Missouri, Memphis, Tennessee, Greensboro, North Carolina, Peoria, Illinois, and so many others.
As an example, Sarasota, Florida has apparently renamed its City Island to Google Island. Duluth, Minnesota mayor Don Ness tries to get the Internet search giant's attention by creating a spoof video where he declared all first-born boys to be named "GoogleFiber," and all first-born females to be named "Googlette." The mayor of Topeka, Kansas said that the city would be renamed to Google, Kansas for the entire month of March.
Meanwhile, the residents of Wilmington, North Carolina are basking in free, public Internet. It may not be 1GB/s, but it costs nothing to surf the Internet at the park. Now that's fiber you can really chew on.