And the winner is.... Kansas City!? Yep, the lucky winner of Google's Gigabit FTTH project is Kansas City, Kansas. Nope, not the one accross the river in Missouri that has 2.1M people as well as its very own NFL team. It's the one with just 145,786 people according to the 2010 census, and is only the third largest city in the Kansas City metro area. A cynic might suggest that the name power of its larger brother alongside a more reasonable population target might have influenced Google's choice. After all, they are looking for a showcase project, and it helps if the name is a big one already.
Google made the announcement on its official blog yesterday, and they do plan to move pretty quickly. Pending approval from the city's Board of Commissioners, they plan to start offering service in 2012. Yeah, as if the city would turn down a 1Gbps to the home project and years of free publicity?
As for the other 1,000+ that put their name in Google's hat, Google did offer up a lifeline. They'll be looking closely at ways to bring ultra high-speed internet to other cities across the country. If you parse that carefully, you'll note it promises nothing - but that's the thing with a public raffle like this, only one gets to win.
So congrats to Kansas City, Kansas! Here's the YouTube video they put out about the decision:
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