Google and AT&T Race to Expand U.S. Fiber Optic Networks

AT&T announced plans to bring its high-speed fiber optic network, AT&T U-verse with GigaPower, to as many as 100 cities, including some that are already part of Google Fiber’s planned expansion in the next few years. AT&T and Google have fiber optic development planned in several of the same cities, such as San Antonio, Texas; San Jose, California; Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; and the Raleigh-Durham region of North Carolina.

The full list of AT&T’s metropolitan areas for a fiber-optic network includes Augusta, Georgia; Chicago; Cleveland; Fort Worth, Texas; Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Greensboro, North Carolina; Houston; Jacksonville, Florida; Kansas City, Kansas; Los Angeles; Miami; Oakland, California; Orlando, Florida; San Diego; St. Louis and San Francisco.

The company chose these sites because the “communities that have suitable network facilities, and show the strongest investment cases based on anticipated demand, and the most receptive policies will influence these future selections and coverage maps within selected areas,” according to an AT&T press release.

“With speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second, you can download 25 songs in one second, download your favorite TV show in less than 3 seconds, or download an online HD movie in less than 36 seconds,” claims the AT&T U-verse with GigaPower site.

AT&T and Google’s fiber optic networks are similar in that they offer broadband customers 1 gigabit per second downloads, which is 100 times faster than average broadband speeds. Their prices are also comparable. “AT&T hasn’t announced pricing for the U-verse with GigaPower service in the new territories, but in Austin, where it’s already launched U-verse with GigaPower, it has priced the service to match Google’s $70 a month service,” reports CNET.

Google launched the first fiber-optic network in Kansas City in 2012. Since then, it has expanded to Austin, Texas and Provo, Utah. Google Fiber will be coming to at least nine new regions within the next few years.

As Google and AT&T Race for Fiber Optic Dominance, Here’s Wehere They Might Go, Re/code, 4/21/14
AT&T’s Expansion of 1 Gbps to 100 Cities is a Big, Fat Bluff, DSLReports, 4/21/14

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