The Google Fiber blog reports that the company's Gigabit service is heading to Shawnee, Kansas. It's the latest in a string of locations that began in Kansas City, Kansas/Missouri and has expanded to North Kansas City, Missouri; Olathe, Kansas; Austin, Texas; Provo, Utah and other locations. The service offers three subscription plans including a free internet package, a Gigabit internet-only package, and a Gigabit Internet plus TV package.
"Shawnee, which is right outside of Kansas City, is known as a tight-knit community and a great place to do business," said Google Fiber community manager Rachel Hack. "We’ve also been impressed by Shawnee’s vision to keep their citizens informed and involved using the Internet. Recently, the City modernized their website, so that locals can easily access city info—from crime maps to fiscal reports to streamed audio of city council meetings."
Google is seemingly creating starting points for its Gigabit network in key locations throughout the United States: Kansas for the central part, Utah for the mid-western part and Texas for the southern portion. Next Google may likely branch out to the east coast, up into Minnesota, into the New England area, and then branch out from those locations.
As seen in the Kansas City area, the company is seemingly taking 35 South, stringing its network down to Shawnee and Olathe. Ottawa could be next, followed by Emporia. The company is also heading down 71 South, expanding Google Fiber to South Kansas City. Grandview, Belton and Raymore could be likely targets after that.
For those that are interested, an actual list of cities slated to receive Google Fiber can be found here. It also includes Westwood, Kansas, Westwood Hills, Kansas, Mission Woods, Kansas, and South Kansas City, Missouri.
Of course, most of that networking layout speculation is based on current map locations. It may be a while before Google Fiber is even established in Shawnee. "We still have a lot of planning and engineering work to do before we’re ready to bring Fiber to Shawnee, so we don’t have an estimate for when service will be available yet," Hack added. "We’ll be sure to publish an update here as soon as we have it."
The free internet package offered by Google Fiber requires a $300 "deposit" up-front, and limits the user to 5 Mbps download and 1 Mbps uploads. The Gigabit package waives the deposit, and opens up the pipes to 1 Gbps upstream and downstream, but costs $70 per month. The Gigabit + TV package also waives the deposit, and costs $120 per month.