A few weeks back, it was announced that Seattle was the first city to publicly apply for Google's 1Gbps fiber network. Naturally, being from Seattle, I was very proud to see our local government further honoring the hand that feeds it -- as our state has made some decisions over the past few years that have pushed other technology/engineering companies out.
After the initial excitement wore-off, I started thinking about How & Why Google would choose Seattle as their fast-as-dark internet testbed. Here are some Pros & Cons I've come up with:
+ Extremely high adoption rates for emerging technologies
+ Productivity/Activity are high on both the consumer and enterprise lever [over web], so Google would be supplied with a very rich stream of data to analyze
+ Very multi-cultural environment with strong international ties
+ Keep your friends close and your enemies closer ;-)
+ Keep your friends close, because your enemies might decide to eat you
+ Geographically, this is probably the single worst landscape in the world for fiber infrastructure
+ Competition -- T-mobile, Clear, AT&T call it home
+ Back to geography... While the population is particularly dense in Seattle, a fiber network downtown would be highly isolated, perhaps not meeting the spectrum of users intended for the project
I don't want to be the bad-news-betty, but I've already started adjusting my comfort level to the fact that Seattle WILL NOT be the test site for Google's 1Gbps project. I truly hope that I'm wrong, but the geography and competition here are HUGE hurdles that will likely nix the idea from Google's planning department.
I work in Software M&A. This is a personal / business blog.