Google Fiber seems to be the Internet/TV service everyone wants these days, but not everyone can get. Well why not? The service offers up to one gigabit upload and download speed with no data caps, along with other goodies for $120 per month. Well today Google surprised many with an intent to acquire the existing fiber network in the city of Provo, Utah. Provo wasn’t on Google’s list for laying a new fiber network, but the circumstances there were prime for Google takeover. Provo currently faces $39M in debt which the city took on to build the expensive network. But major John Curtis says selling the network “is painful but the right thing to do.” Google says their intention would be to finish the existing fiber network (a municipally-owned system called iProvo) and upgrade to gigabit technology in order to offer Google Fiber services to residents.
Google says they’re “committed to keeping [the iProvo] vision alive,” and as in Kansas City markets would offer free 5 Mbps internet to anyone in the existing network for at least seven years (with a $30 set up fee). Google also committed to providing free Gigabit Internet service to 25 local public institutions including schools, hospitals and libraries.
Provo, with a population of about 113,000, is the third largest city in Utah County. A sale to Google will be voted on by City Council this coming Tuesday, April 23.