Flush with Fiber: High Speed Gigabit Internet Roll-out Continues

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News Posted: Sun, Jul 14 2013 2:01 PM

When Google first unveiled its 1Gbit fiber Internet service last summer, it seemed unlikely that such speeds would become common anytime soon. However, there was great hope that with Google's pressure, other ISPs would be pushed towards offering their own 1Gbit services. This past April, we did see some evidence of that, with AT&T promising to roll out its own 1Gbit service in the Austin, Texas area.

Things don't stop there. It seems that some of the biggest ISPs are being seriously slow to catch onto the 1Gbit option, with Verizon charging a staggering $210 in some areas for a 300Mbit/s connection. The gotcha here is that the upload is 65Mbit/s (as someone with 0.5Mbit/s home upload, it pains me to write this). Take a look at Arvig, likely an ISP you've never heard of, but it offers a 1Gbit package for $300 per month - and the 1Gbit is bi-directional. Expensive, definitely, but that's what happens when the area being serviced has no competition.

In some places, the offerings can be even cheaper. Vermont Telephone, which services just 17.5K customers, offers gigabit packages for as low as $30 per month. In Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia, has not one, but two 1Gbit competitors - OneGigabit and Shaw. To help offer people the best bang for the buck, OneGigabit focuses on condos and apartment buildings; Shaw will focus on virtually anyone as long as the area is fiber-ready.

While I'm sure Google would love to get into all of the biggest markets at once, as consumers we can at least be happy at the fact that the company spearheaded this 1Gbit movement. As we can see, things have been accelerating over the past year, and it's only likely to get better. In time, we might just consider these mega-speeds to be normal, and not so out-of-the-ordinary.

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MMaddox replied on Sun, Jul 14 2013 2:28 PM

Can't wait to see speeds like that in my neighborhood.

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Canadian ISP's are REALLY lazy and like to sit on their butts.

We have one of the worst price / performance ratio's throughout the country compared to most modernized countries. I am definitely glad that Vancouver has finally gotten gigabit, but I think we need to roll it out much more than just that.

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Versifier replied on Sun, Jul 14 2013 2:58 PM

The CRTC really needs to allow more foreign competition in to Canada. Decently priced Gigabit connections would be amazing. Google Fiber in Canada needs to happen... but it probably won't!

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RWilliams replied on Sun, Jul 14 2013 3:23 PM

Not all Canadian ISPs are like that. Where I'm from (east coast, New Brunswick), our ISP was the first to offer DSL in all of Canada, as far as I'm aware, and in Saint John in particular, it was one of the first cities in all of Canada to offer fiber deployments. This ISP is admittedly unlike most others though... there are no bandwidth caps, which most of Canada still have (even through the same ISP, Bell).

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RWilliams replied on Sun, Jul 14 2013 3:33 PM

It won't happen because I'm sure the CRTC is being paid-off by the likes of Rogers and Bell to keep competition out. It's disgusting. I'm of course just *assuming* things here, but I've learned to not trust either of those companies... at all.

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I am glad Google decided to take the spearhead, we need to catch up to South Korea with faster speed in this country tries and decrease its dilapidated infrastructure and aims to keep itself a powerhouse.

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RWilliams replied on Sun, Jul 14 2013 5:54 PM

That reminds me of when I was in Taiwan a couple of years ago. The Internet infrastructure was so much better there than what I was used to. I was in a non-tourist town with a friend, sitting at a cafe, and with my laptop, I connected to some free open wifi spot. The connection was great, and the speeds were faster than my home Internet connection, I just couldn't believe it (I think it was 20Mbit/s).

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realneil replied on Mon, Jul 15 2013 1:42 AM

I can't see Google (or any) Fiber in my area during my lifetime. We're too rural.

Dogs are great judges of character, and if your dog doesn't like somebody being around, you shouldn't trust them.

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Me too Realniel, I live in the sticks, as do many Canadians...

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now if only gigabit would come where im at or even half the speed of gigabit i would be happy right now 2mbps is costing us 50 bucks

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ajm531 replied on Tue, Jul 16 2013 12:31 AM

Dont give up hope buddy but im just sitting here waiting for it to hit san antonio. Its like right next to austin. Come on guys speed it up.

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Jaybk26 replied on Thu, Jul 18 2013 1:42 PM

When I read articles like this it just makes me sad to live in such a small, rural town.

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