Googling Provo: The Tech Giant Adds iProvo to its Fiber Experiment.

By Dan Sorensen

September 9, 2013


The Internet of Things

While Google Fiber is only being rolled out to residential consumers at first, it still has the potential to greatly impact businesses of all shapes and sizes. Once consumers have the capabilities offered by gigabit networks, it will create a market where developers can release new, powerful applications.

Many of these applications will likely involve video, which is currently the most data-intensive portion of the online experience. In fact, by 2016 it is expected that online video will make up 86 percent of all internet traffic.

Many other businesses will likely use fiber to create constant streams of data that better connect the world in which we live.

“As we look forward, sensory networks will become very important as we continue to maximize our natural resources,” says Manning. “Here in Utah, we are constantly reminded to conserve water. If everyone’s sprinkling systems knew when they needed to water, rather than when the homeowners thought they needed to water, think about how much water we could save.”

Today, doctors can video chat with patients who are located in rural areas that lack the necessary medical expertise. In theory, with the right hardware—like robotic surgical systems and the low latency connectivity delivered by fiber internet—doctors could even perform surgeries remotely.

The connecting of all the devices and services that run our lives is often referred to as the “internet of things.” Equipping devices and gadgets with networking capabilities has the ability to greatly increase productivity and efficiency throughout the world.

The building of the internet of things is already underway with devices like the Nest Learning Thermostat, Phillips Hue light bulbs and hundreds of other gadgets. However, gigabit connections can greatly increase the potential by providing the bandwidth needed to connect hundreds or even thousands of gadgets we use.

Regardless of whether you get fiber or not, expect to see our world begin connecting in ways never before imagined.


Google’s Lengthening Tentacles

Many outside of Provo are curious to see if gigabit internet might soon be offered in their area. Google Fiber originally launched in Kansas City, Kan., in July 2012. Since then, Google has spread its network to Kansas City, Mo., and nine other cities around the Kansas City area.

Currently, the only other areas that are slated to receive Google Fiber are Provo and Austin, Texas. With such a rapid expansion happening in the Kansas City area, it is likely that other parts of Utah will soon receive fiber internet as well—especially since parts of Utah are already being serviced by UTOPIA.

No matter where you live, it is likely we will see faster, more affordable internet connections roll out everywhere thanks to Google. Traditionally, internet service providers avoid upgrading networks, as they are by far the most expensive part of their business model. Once a network is in place, profits can be maximized. Fiber networks are expensive to roll out, but with Google entering the market, many ISPs will likely begin speeding up their timelines to deliver faster internet to their current customers.

In fact, Google has publically said the reason it has entered the market is to shame other ISPs into upgrading their networks so Google customers can better utilize the company’s services.

Only time will tell when the rest of us will receive gigabit internet speeds, but for many, Provo City has never looked so good. 


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