The Triangle is rife with anticipation since the announcement that Google Fiber is considering 7 of its municipalities for installation – Carrboro, Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham, Garner, Morrisville, and Raleigh. As the process moves forward, here are some key ideas to keep in mind:
- From Google’s perspective, all 34 cities on the list can potentially have Google Fiber if they are able to make it through the process without hitting any roadblocks – It is not a competition.
- The checklist is quite lengthy and represents a collection of best practices recommended by the Fiber to the Home Council, the Gig U report, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
- Item #1: Provide information about existing infrastructure
- Item #2: Help ensure access to existing infrastructure
- Item #3: Help make construction speedy and predictable
- Google provides an option for residents to sign up for more information and to stay informed on your area’s status updates here.
- It may take up to 2 years to lay the fiber and get everyone connected to the service.
Google representatives will begin evaluation of checklist materials in May and hope to provide an update on which cities made the cut by the end of the year.
It is unclear how Google Fiber will alter Internet and TV service competition in the area. Though Google fiber is only targeting residential customers now, officials say it may offer small business products in the future. “There’s no question. I will have to [sign up for Google Fiber] because there is absolutely no comparison in the price-per-performance,” says Scott Gentry, an engineer at NetApp in RTP. “Google Fiber would push 4 -7GB downloads per minute, meaning I could play a new 20GB download game off of Steam within 5 minutes instead of waiting 30 min to an hour with Time Warner Cable.”
RST Fiber, a company based in Shelby, NC, plans to offer gigabit speed Internet connections priced at $99/month, as well as ala carte TV services in the Raleigh area within the next 60 days. RST’s statewide fiber optic network is already operational, utilizing Cisco technology to cover some 3,100 miles. Raleigh and Asheville are the first areas being offered service, followed closely by south Charlotte.
To keep up-to-date on Google Fiber in the Triangle, visit and like the Google Fiber for Raleigh Facebook page.