Google’s Gonna Do what!?

Yesterday morning I was going to write about my new book I released, Fighting the Next Good Fight: Bringing true broadband to your community. Then the Google news about them jumping into the fiber-to-the-home business hit early on, and the rest of the day was spent talking to people wanting to know what it all meant. More to write about.

As the night eases into the a.m. hours, I figure I’ll cover both in one post. My book methodically lays out steps you should follow to effectively plan for a financially sustainable broadband network (see Table of Contents). And here comes Google with a bold proclamation to take action that happens to reflect many of the lessons presented in the book. Serendipity is a beautiful thing.

Is seeing believable?

The most common question I heard was, is this a real move by Google to become a broadband player, or just a feint, a jab-and-move kind of deal similar to Google’s efforts in muni wireless in 2006, or their play for spectrum soon after this. Because Google’s long-term fortunes are buoyed by there being blazing fast broadband everywhere possible, I don’t count out its extended involvement in these projects.

First, Google has the market clout and bankroll to be taken seriously, and so there will be a spotlight on Google’s broadband actions as long as they pursue them, subsequently giving the company the mantle of a leader in the space. It could become a long lasting distinction if, as one of their product managers expressed in a GigaOm interview, the company takes the learning from this test bed to the world. I have to believe this is good for some of Google’s other businesses. It’s a great deal, with a caveat or two, for the rest of us.

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