Google Fiber Test Community Choice Delayed Until 2011

On Dec 15, 2010 Google announced they will be delaying their decision on which city or cities will get to sample its 1Gbps broadband network until early in 2011. They said the reason for this was that they simply had too many applicants.

Earlier this year Google announced its plans to begin construction of a fiber network to support Internet data at speeds of over 1 gigabit per second. That’s more than 100x faster than most current residential broadband connections, paving the way for much improved application delivery, especially in the video and gaming sectors.

Google intends to test an initial offering of this network for 50,000 to 500,000 people in the U.S. Google accepted volunteer bids from municipalities, triggering a frenzied competition for the initial free service release. Even politicians jumped into the action with almost reckless abandon to garner Google’s attention. The bidding was closed last March, but not before over 1,100 communities and 194,000 individuals had applied.

Initially, Google announced they were planning to announce their choice by the end of this year, but with only two weeks left in 2010, Google has yet to pick a community or communities. “While we’re moving ahead full steam on this project, we’re not quite ready to make that announcement,” said Milo Medin, Google’s new VP of Access Services. Medin went on to say, “We’re sorry for this delay, but we want to make sure we get this right.”

Google now expects to complete the selection process in early 2011.

This update comes almost 2 months after Google signed a deal with Stanford University to offer a broadband network supporting speeds of up to 1 Gbps for 850 homes owned by faculty and staff. This particular experiment is slated to begin in early 2011.