Last week, Google thanked the 1,100 applicants who entered its Google Fiber for Communities contest, an initiative to test high-speed, next generation broadband — known as ‘gigabit’ fiber — that is up to 100 times faster than current average household Internet connections. As we’ve written in this column before, Google plans to wire between 50,000 and a half-million households with gigabit, an experiment which could have broad implications for technological innovation and national broadband policy.
The thank-you was but a tease for Philly’s technology community, which, as part of the City’s application to the Google Fiber for Communities contest, created “Gigabit City,” a repository where folks brainstorm specific projects that may be possible with gigabit technology. Like everyone else, they’ll have to wait until Google announces the winners in the fall, but City of Philadelphia Chief Technology Officer Allan Frank isn’t sitting around. He’s turned the city’s application into an opportunity to engage Philadelphia around next-generation broadband policy.
In the process, he’s been able to push the city’s telecommunication heavies — Comcast and Verizon — to consider Philadelphia’s future.
Read the full story over at Philly Mag’s Philly post.
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