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Google Fiber Optic is leading the way to faster network connection speeds.
Most broadband home internet connections today are in the range of 15-20 megabits-per-second (Mbps), but Google Fiber will clock in at speeds of more than fifty times that — 1000 Mbps. The use of fiber optic cable is what allows Google to reach these blazing speeds. Google Fiber is made possible with new wireless technology called 802.11ac which operates at speeds of 1.3 gigabits-per-second (Gbps). This is the next generation technology which follows 802.11n and supports speeds up to 300 Mbps.
Google isn’t pioneering fiber optic. In fact, some services like Verizon FIOS are already out there and offer speeds of up to 300 Mbps. But the service that Google is piloting in Kansas City is faster and cheaper. Unfortunately, Google Fiber rollout will take some time. Phased rollout by ‘fiberhoods’ in Kansas City area will take until some time in 2013. And will obviously take much longer before it reaches other places in the US.
It seems inevitable that other companies will feel the need to try to match the speeds that Google offers, although it will be difficult for others to compete on price alone. Greater competition will hopefully bring down internet connection prices. And as connection speeds increase and become more universal, expect the capabilities of high-bandwidth activities like gaming, digital distribution, and high-definition video streaming and conferencing to significantly benefit from this trend.