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ISPs warned to ignore Google Fiber at their own peril

ISPs warned to ignore Google Fiber at their own peril

Remember how Time Warner Cable executives tried to claim that American consumers don’t actually want 1Gbps broadband connections? Well, InfoWorld’s Paul Venezia isn’t having any of it and says that ISPs who deny the challenge that Google Fiber represents are whistling past their own graveyards. In particular, Venezia says that he’s surprised that ISPs have kept insisting that “customers don’t want gigabit Internet,” which he likens to “a lead paint salesman pooh-poohing latex paint because ‘customers don’t want their health.'”

Venezia says that this sort of thinking is particularly daft because Google has surprised many observers by announcing plans to launch Google Fiber in three markets throughout the United States, which means that the service can’t be dismissed as “just a ‘test’ in Kansas City.”

“What we have here is essentially chaos among the entrenched ISPs,” Venezia writes. “One major ISP says its customers don’t want the service, while another says it’s going to do the same thing while apparently ignoring its entire pricing schedule. All I hear from the potential customers in these newly announced markets is a loud ‘hallelujah.'”

Google first launched its Fiber service last summer as a comprehensive home Internet and television service that offers customers a 1Gbps fiber-to-the-home connection, hundreds of fiber television channels on-demand and in full HD, and a full terabyte of storage on Google Drive for $120 a month and a two-year service agreement. The service has earned kudos from Netflix, which has labelled it the fastest Internet service in the United States, and from venture capitalist and former Google executive Hunter Walk, who described the service as so fast that “the gap between you and the Internet totally disappears.”

After initially setting up shop in Kansas City last year, Google has become more aggressive in pushing its Fiber services out to more markets in the last month and has announced planned expansions in both Austin, Tex. and Provo, Utah. The company says that it sees Google Fiber as “a real business” rather than just an “experiment,” although it hasn’t yet laid out a comprehensive roadmap for where it will bring the service next.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.