Google Fiber is the ISP that everyone wants — absurdly fast, unlimited internet for a reasonable price. It could legitimately be called the anti-Comcast, and that name now works in more ways than one.
A new FCC filing reveals that Google is exploring new technology to bring internet to users’ home without having to dig up streets. Google wants to conduct an experimental trial of new wireless technology in California, Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, North Carolina, Utah, and Virginia, which could bring Fiber without any actual fiber cables.
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In order to bring high-speed internet to homes without wires, Google would use spectrum much higher than currently used in wireless cell networks. It would use frequencies between 3.3 and 3.8GHz, most likely using line-of-site technology.
The FCC filing doesn’t reveal exactly how Google’s technology would work, but it’s easy to make an educated guess. The expensive part about Fiber is running fiber-0ptic cable to individual houses. If you can run fiber to the network, and then use a different technology to distribute that connection to a few hundred individual homes, things are much cheaper.
This is what ISPs around the world are already doing with fiber-to-the-neighbourhood (FTTN), which runs fiber to a junction box, and then uses existing copper telephone lines for the last couple hundred yards.
Google’s system would likely be similar, but using a high-speed wireless connection for the final link. If it works, it will be cheaper, much easier to hook up, and hopefully mean that Google Fiber can quickly blanket the nation in its warm, low-latency embrace.