Posts Tagged ‘Google Fiber

MOTO X. (The X stands for Texas) June 26

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phoneGoogle revealed Thursday that it has two new sophisticated Android smartphones in the works, one of which will have the unprecedented distinction of being made in the United States.

An HTC One smartphone customized to be “Google’s take on Android” will make its US debut on June 26 at a price of $599, the head of Android, Chrome and Google Apps said at an AllThingsD conference in California.

“It’s a great device,” Google executive Sundar Pichai said during an on-stage interview.

Google Edition handsets by Taiwan-based HTC will be compatible with carriers AT&T and T-Mobile.

Pichai made the disclosure a day after Motorola Mobility head Dennis Woodside said on the same stage that the company’s was preparing to release its first smartphone since being bought by Google.

The smartphone would be called Moto X and be made in a facility near Fort Worth, Texas, Woodside said.

It is the first smartphone that is going to be built in the United States,” Woodside said, noting that the plant would employ about 2,000 people by August.

“We think that it is going to allow us to innovate and iterate that much faster.”

Components for Motorola smartphones will come from Taiwan, South Korea, the United States and elsewhere with about 70 percent of the assembly done in Texas, Woodside said.

read the rest:


Written by messwatx

2013/05/31 at 1:26 am

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Provo Utah to become 3rd Google Fiber city

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Google to acquire Provo, Utah’s fiber, transform it into Google Fiber

Utah city owes a $39M bond for its iProvo network—that’s chump change to Google.

The third-largest city (population: around 112,000) in Utah began building its own municipal fiber network in 2004, but was looking to sell it by 2011, because like other similar municipal networks, it was simply too expensive to operate.

(For the more conspiracy-minded, Provo is also about 27 miles outside a massive National Security Agency data center that is set to be completed this year.)

Written by messwatx

2013/04/17 at 7:06 pm

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Legacy Cable in Austin “Terrified” of Google Fiber

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Article from

The power dynamic will not shift overnight, but the newly announced launch of Google Fiber in the tech-savvy gulch that is Austin, Texas, has legacy cable operators shaking in their boots. And with good reason.

On paper, literally everything about Google Fiber makes standard digital-cable service look like something that was cobbled together by members of a lesser phylum. Boasting gigabit download/upload speeds (up to 1,000 Megabits per second), Google’s connectivity is roughly 70 times faster than Time Warner Cable’s standard 15 Mbps plan.

Google Fiber TV is just as head spinning, allowing subscribers to record up to eight programs simultaneously while offering two terabytes of storage, on par with the capacity of DISH Network’s Hopper.

When Google Fiber late last year began transforming Kansas City into the nation’s sole “no-buffering zone,” incumbent Time Warner Cable established a hotline for locals to report tips and rumors about the construction effort. To sweeten the pot, TWC rewarded select members of its spy network with $50 gift certificates.

TWC is by far the dominant operator in the Austin DMA, which boasts 705,280 TV households. The MSO serves approximately 50 percent of Austin’s pay-TV subs, followed by DirecTV (18 percent), DISH Net (17 percent) and relative newbie AT&T U-verse (15 percent).

For all of TWC’s justifiable paranoia, it’s worth noting that no cable overbuilder has ever proved to be a financial success. “While residents and area businesses will undoubtedly be delighted, investors will need to be mindful of the costs associated with the company’s strategies,” said Pivotal Research Group analyst Brian Wieser. “Google is ‘protecting the moat’ around its paid search business by spending hundreds of millions—and eventually billions?—on Google Fiber. While I don’t doubt that the consumer experience will be a highly desirable one, [this appears to be a] margin-eroding strategy.”

That may prove to be the case, but the Masters of the Universe have sat up and taken notice. At around the same time the K.C. rollout got underway in earnest, Boston-based institutional investor FMR LLC scooped up an eye-popping $11.6 billion in Google Class A shares.

“As Google works out the kinks, it appears set for faster growth” in Kansas City, said BTIG analyst Rich Greenfield, adding that the fact that Austin owns its own electric utility will go a long way toward eliminating third-party interference.

Bottom line is, with $48.1 billion in cash on its balance sheet, Google perhaps can afford to wait as much as 10 years for a return on its initial investment.

As for future deployments, only time will tell. Eighteen months elapsed between the time K.C. was named the first Google Fiber city and installations began.

Written by messwatx

2013/04/17 at 6:59 pm

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ARS: Nationwide Google Fiber would cost $11B over five years, probably will never happen

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Analysts: Google likely won’t “find a scalable and economically feasible model.”

Just one day before Google is expected to announced that it will bring Google Fiber to Austin, Texas, two Wall Street analysts from Alliance Bernstein (Carlos Kirjner and Ram Parameswaran) have calculated that it would cost $11 billion annually to bring gigabit to the rest of the nation on the scale of other large nationwide providers like Comcast or Time Warner Cable. Based on that model, Google’s fiber network would pass “roughly 15 percent of US homes.”

By comparison, Google is worth (based on its market capitalization) around $253 billion—so the search giant would have to spend about four percent of its net worth to bring a fair portion of us some of that sweet, cheap, crazy-fast broadband.

Google appears to be looking for cities that have a certain size (geographic area) and a certain population density—Austin’s is roughly the same size as Kansas City, KS and Kansas City, MO combined. Google’s aim, after all, is really to sell increasingly targeted ads—Fiber, like Gmail and search, is a means of doing that.

We remain skeptical that Google will find a scalable and economically feasible model to extend its build out to a large portion of the US, as costs would be substantial, regulatory and competitive barriers material, and in the end the effort would have limited impact on the global trajectory of the business.

For example, making the far from trivial assumption that Google can identify 20 million homes in relatively contiguous areas with (on average) similar characteristics as Kansas City when it comes to the most important drivers of network deployment cost, homes per mile of plant and the mix of aerial, buried and underground infrastructure, and that Google decides to build out a fiber network to serve them over a period of five years, we estimate the [total capital expenditure] investment required to be in the order of $11 billion to pass the homes, before acquiring or connecting a single customer.

As far as these financial analysts are concerned, it seems unlikely that we’re going to get some serious competition everywhere that Ars readers live, but we can dream, can’t we?

So why is Google undertaking this entire process?

Here’s what the Bernstein folks say: “we believe Google Fiber has two related objectives: first, Google is seeking to figure out whether or not, or under what conditions, it can make money as a facilities-based provider of broadband and pay TV services; second, it is an opportunity for Google to test new applications, new ad formats and delivery models (e.g., targeted TV ads) and to get further insight into consumer behavior. We do not believe this effort will have any significant impact on regulation or legislation.”

UPDATE 3:45pm CT: Kirjner wrote us to say that he had “picked up a typo in our write-up. The $11 billion is not annual but total. I corrected it in our files. Please do so too if you can.” In other words, rather than Google spending $11 billion annually, the analysts estimate this is what Google would spend over five years.

WIRED also posted about Austin getting hip on the Fiber:

And Burnt Orange Report had an interesting enough post script to reprint here as well:

“We’ll be there at 11am tomorrow. Who knows- maybe everyone in Austin is going to get Google Glass, or better yet, a free (Google self-driving) new caarrrrrr!

P.S. If you are really into the costs of Fiber investment, what it could look like in Austin, and enjoy charts, check out this post from Business Insider. It’s pretty clear that taking on Time Warner and the cable boys is part of Google’s plan, one which many in Austin would appreciate given the previous consumer response against Time Warner’s plan to introduce metered bandwidth pricing.”

Written by messwatx

2013/04/09 at 12:30 pm

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It’s official: Google Fiber is coming to Austin “by mid-2014”

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Product, pricing will be “roughly similar to Kansas City,” Google says.

by – Apr 9 2013, 11:50am CDT

Just days after Google sent out a sneaky little announcement inviting the press to the Texas capital, the company has now confirmed what we’d all long suspected. Austin is slated to receive the gigabit speed of Google Fiber “by mid-2014,” with a “similar choice of products as our customers in Kansas City,” priced at “roughly similar to Kansas City.”

Google has been reticent to say what its broader plans are for bringing Google Fiber to other communities around the US—on Monday, two Wall Street analysts concluded that Google likely wouldn’t bring it to the rest of the country.

Currently, in the Kansas City area, the service comes in three options: a $120 per month package (which includes TV-over-IP and a DVR to go along with it), a $70 per month package (same gigabit speed, minus the TV), and an option to get your house “Google Fiber”-ready at a one-time construction cost of $300 (which can be split up over 12 months)—that will bring 5Mbps, for free, over seven years.

“We’re also planning to connect many public institutions as we build in Austin—schools, hospitals, community centers, etc.—at a gigabit for no charge,” the company added in a corporate blog post on Monday.

Google will be hosting a conference call for reporters on Monday afternoon, and we will update this story once we’ve heard more from the call.

In the meantime, here’s the latest promo video:


And a thank you!

Written by messwatx

2013/04/09 at 12:12 pm

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