Barbecue, steaks, and blues may no longer be reasons to hot foot it to Kansas City. Google recently broke ground on a project that will have the lucky residents reaching blazing internet speeds of up to one GB. You read that right. One gigabit per second.
The initial fiber optic network will come online on the Kansas side, but will eventually be rolled out into the Missouri side too, ultimately reaching over half a million people.
But wait, Google isn’t an ISP is it. Why are they doing this? As ReadWriteWeb reports, it’s certainly not altruistic.
Google’s not just doing this to collect Internet bills from homes. When the Internet gets faster, Google’s whole business benefits. Google wants to test new, bandwidth-intensive “killer apps” to see what kinds of future services it can provide. But even for normal Web services, speed benefits Google. Put bluntly, the faster your Internet, the more Google ads you can see. That’s why Google search and the Chrome browser are so dang fast.
So when is Google coming to your town? Maybe never. At this point, Google sees this as an experiment, but I’m betting they also see this as a Field of Dreams “build it and they will come” clarion call that will spur similar networks for the rest of the country. Until then though, I can think of worse places to do a little cyber-tourism than good ole KC. I can just see the boys from The Big Bang Theory making a Mecca-like pilgrimage now.