Gigabit Cities

Portland Leapfrogs Google's Gigabit Queue – Report

Google has already named its next gigabit cities: Atlanta, Nashville, Salt Lake City and the areas of Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham in N.C. However, a report in The Oregonian suggests Portland, Ore. may be cutting to the front of the line.

According to the report, first unearthed by DSLReports, Google Fiber Inc. executives shared the news in a meeting last week that Portland will be the company's next gigabit city. Charlotte tech entrepreneur Alan Fitzpatrick, a co-founder of Charlotte Hearts Gigabit, was surprised by the information given that Portland isn't slated for Google Fiber service until after cities in Georgia, Tennessee, Utah and North Carolina get their due. However, Portland does have ties to the gigabit provider already, and many have speculated that the city would join Google's gigabit list in the near future.

Google has already signed a franchise agreement with Portland and received tax incentives for gigabit deployment. The company also acknowledged in January that it was exploring the possibility of extending service into Portland, Phoenix, San Antonio and San Jose.

The rollout of Gigabit broadband access networks is spreading. Find out what's happening where in our dedicated Gigabit Cities content channel here on Light Reading.

The fact that Portland wasn't on Google's short list came as a surprise to industry followers when that list was announced earlier this year.

"I'm kind of surprised, because the Portland folks have been making more 'we get it next' noise than the rest," said independent industry analyst Craig Settles back in January. "Raleigh and Portland have been most vocal… and the fact that Portland's not on this list is definitely a surprise." (See Google Continues Gigabit Expansion.)

Currently, Google is offering gigabit service in Kansas City, Provo, Utah and Austin for $70 per month. News emerged last week that network construction has begun in Nashville and Salt Lake City. Construction started in Charlotte last month.

In other recent gigabit news:

— Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading

KBode 6/15/2015 | 5:33:15 PM
Re: Linear thinking Smashing through a generation of regulatory capture AND dealing with cumbersome municpal bureaocracies isn't easy. Even a company as big and wealthy as Google needs to stagger the punches, I suppose. Of course the primacy benefit of Google Fiber for Google is the PR mileage received, so they certainly do have a tendency to stagger announcements for maximum impact in that regard.
mendyk 6/15/2015 | 5:27:43 PM
Re: Linear thinking Yes, it's the announcements that are staggered -- so that Tier 2 cities can compete for the right to be considered Google-worthy. Not too many businesses can get away with that, or would even want to try.
KBode 6/15/2015 | 5:16:19 PM
Re: Linear thinking Some of it is concurrent. Austin, KC, Salt Lake City and Charlotte have all started their respective builds, even though the pace so far hasn't been much to write home about.
mendyk 6/15/2015 | 2:23:50 PM
Linear thinking Is there a reason that Google is building out these networks one at a time rather than concurrently?
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