Silicon Prairie News

Gig Bits: A television tussle, a new-look website and free fiber in town

Kansas City April 3, 2012 by Michael Stacy

Contrary to Google's gag on April Fools' Day, its Fiber project is not, in fact, a nutritional bar.  

All this talk about Google Fiber Bars making anyone else hungry? Well worry not; we're here to help curb that appetite with another heaping helping of Gig Bits.

TV tussle

As we reported Sunday, Google Fiber put its own unique twist on Google's customary April 1 fun, claiming that Google Fiber was actually a nutritional bar. But not everyone in the Kansas City area is laughing about Google Fiber. 

The Kansas City Business Journal reported last month that Google Fiber has ruffled some feathers among area cable operators, who are concerned Google isn't being held to the regulatory guidelines by which cable companies have to abide. That comes on the heels of reports earlier in the month that regulators in Missouri and Kansas had approved Google's application to provide video services in the states.

Elsewhere, The Kansas City Star published a story on the impending war between Google and the metro area's established cable providers. The takeaway: Google faces an uphill battle against the likes of Time Warner, which has some 900 employees on the ground in Kansas City and 33.2 percent of the pay TV subscribers in the city. But, regardless of who wins the potential clash of the corporate titans, consumers stand to benefit.

A makeover for Google Connects KC

We mentioned it briefly in Prairie Moves awhile back, but in mid-March Google Connects KC unveiled a new look for its website. A collaboration between Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the Social Media Club of Kansas City and the Mayors' Bistate Innovations Team, Google Connects KC was established to provide Kansas City residents with Google Fiber-related information, updates and events.

"We hope the new website will provide a place for anyone in the Kansas City community to find the best and most current information on the Google fiber project," Mike Burke, Missouri co-chair of the Mayors’ Bistate Innovations Team said in a press release. "We also hope that people will use it to share their ideas on how this advance in internet speed could be used to both improve quality of life for all our residents and to make us a more competitive region."

Google Connects KC continues to make a push for neighborhoods to register for Give Us A Gig, an education, engagement and advocacy effort to help Kansas City communities prepare for Google’s "demand-driven" rollout of Fiber. People can sign up their neighborhoods on the Give Us A Gig registration page.

North Kansas City, come on and fiber up

Google isn't the only source of fiber in town, North Kansas City reminded residents recently. 

North Kansas City's liNKCity, the first municipally owned and operated FTTS (fiber-to-the-subscriber) network in the state of Missouri, is raffling off a free month of gigabit speed internet to businesses in North Kansas City, per a story published Friday by The Star. Businesses in North Kansas City typically pay between $2,500 and $3,500 a month for gigabit service.

Entries for the raffle can be submitted online at linkcity.org.

 

Credits: Screenshot from google.com/fiber


Gig Bits is an occasional feature that provides a rundown of the latest newsworthy nuggets related to the Google Fiber project in the Kansas City area.

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