Google to Put Fiber on the Map in Utah for Just $1

Barely one week after Google announced its plans to extend its fiber optic network to Austin, Texas, the company also announced its intentions to bring its 1 Gbps Internet service to Provo, Utah. According to the announcement last week, Google Fiber will offer Provo residents and businesses download speeds of up to 1 Gbps for $70 a month for gigabit Internet and $120 a month for gigabit Internet and TV service.

Utah, home to hundreds of hi-tech companies and startups, ranks second highest in patent growth and consistently ranks in Forbes’ top places to live and do business in the United States. But, these aren’t the only things that make this city attractive to Google. In 2004, Provo made an investment to increase the city’s connectivity for both residents and businesses. That year, Provo’s existing fiber optic network, known as “iProvo”, was built, costing the city $39 million. Now, to acquire Provo’s existing fiber optic network, Google will pay much less than $39 million. In fact, they will pay only $1 to the Provo City Council in return for its high speed Internet and TV service.

So, why did the Provo City Council give its $39 million fiber network to Google for just $1? Well, this isn’t the average sale. Google will not only take over Provo’s fiber network and make improvements to it, but also they have agreed to take over the city’s construction loans and some of the residents’ costs. Google will offer its free 5 Mbps Internet service to residents in Provo for a one-time $30 activation fee and no recurring monthly charge (for at least seven years). “We [will] also provide free Gigabit Internet service to 25 local public institutions like schools, hospitals and libraries,” said Kevin Lo, General Manager of Google Fiber, in his recent blog post.

Fiber optic network maps, fiber lit buildings, and other fiber data sets can be used by places such as Provo to help city engineers and local government officials to analyze their existing fiber infrastructure as they look towards making improvements to increase their city’s connectivity. If you are interested in obtaining fiber maps, fiber network maps, or other fiber GIS products, contact GeoTel Communications at (800) 277-2172.