Not content with its first playground of Kansas City or its expansion projects in Provo UT and Austin TX, Google says it is now planning to target major cities around the country for its FTTH services.
They are still narrowing the field but have a list of 34 communities in nine new metro areas that they are talking to. The nine metro areas are Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville, Phoenix; Portland, Raleigh-Durham, San Antonio, Salt Lake City, and San Jose.
Of course, if you are from the Northeast or Midatlantic part of the US you certainly notice that Google Fiber isn’t knocking on any doors near you. The why is quite simple: anywhere Verizon FIOS was built out would be a harder nut to crack, especially in a part of the country where building anything is a more complicated project.
White knight or not, Google Fiber is cherrypicking and the cherry trees in the northeast have been picked over. That’s not an indictment, Google Fiber simply can’t build everywhere at once. So they’re picking the places where the numbers work the best and that’s not going to be somewhere there is already an FTTH option.
I have to admit, Google keeps surprising me with the extent of this project. I still think KC was a project designed to kickstart the telcos and cables into doing the job, but it turned out they weren’t bluffing. And the way Google has managed their relationship with target markets has been a huge part of it, transforming a usually antagonistic situation into one where communities fall all over themselves to help Google’s FTTH buildout a success.
I also think it’s no accident that Google chose to issue this with the pending Comcast/TWC deal fresh in everyone’s minds. The White Knight of Bandwidth has pretty good timing.