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Google Getting Into The ISP Business

     
5:41 pm on Feb 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Google Getting Into The ISP Business [googleblog.blogspot.com]
We're planning to build and test ultra high-speed broadband networks in a small number of trial locations across the United States. We'll deliver Internet speeds more than 100 times faster than what most Americans have access to today with 1 gigabit per second, fiber-to-the-home connections. We plan to offer service at a competitive price to at least 50,000 and potentially up to 500,000 people.
8:29 am on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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[online.wsj.com...]
It isn't cheap:
The National Cable & Telecommunications Association, which represents cable operators, noted in a statement that cable operators have invested $161 billion over the past 13 years in Internet lines, and said that they "look forward to learning more about Google's broadband experiment."
11:06 am on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Imagine how fast Google properties (YouTube, Maps, Gmail etc.) would respond on a Google ISP! Presumably if they have their servers parked right on top of their mega-pipes then the latencies would be infinitessimal...

Perhaps they're looking to go down the ISP route partially to create an "unbeatable" differentiator in the battle against Bing, Yahoo Mail etc. i.e. once you're plugged into Google ISP then all of Google's services (probably over 100 of them at the moment if you count Labs stuff, Blogger, Feedburner etc. as well) simply will work FASTER than you've ever experienced web services working before. And nobody else's services will ever respond as fast, for the proximity-to-source reason I outlined above.

And of course, Google's well positioned because they own by far the most dark fiber in private hands of any corporation.
1:27 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I'm trying to be objective, but this just seems like another hobby for Dabble, Inc. There's a lot that goes into the ISP business where G just doesn't have any competency; customer service, provisioning, field work... And G will be up against some very big companies with well over a decade head start in the business. I understand that G is trying to leverage its infrastructure, but infrastructure is just one piece of the puzzle.

I predict yet another quickly forgotten beta product, and a fresh new set of business enemies for Google.
1:59 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have come to the conclusion that this announcement is a PR stunt, maybe to cover the not so successful launch of Google Buzz?

It will cost them an arm and a leg to get any significant network coverage. To deliver 1 Gigabit per second to a subscriber they'll have to dig up streets and gardens and what not. Impossible.
2:52 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Story makes a lot of sense when you recall all the 'Dark Fiber' stories about google a few years ago.
4:59 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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One more way to continue losing focus.

When will Google stop releasing all these products that make so much buzz and publicity, but as time passes by, we completely forget about them, and no one cares.

They should just worry about their core products, where they are pretty good at and forget about the rest. The ones they should focus on: Search, Adsense, Adwords, Android, Gmail, Talk, News, Maps, Youtube, Calendar, Docs.

Everything else like Buzz, Orkut, Knoll, Voice, ISP, Books, Groups, Wave etc.... FORGET ABOUT THEM.
6:50 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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A great bargain for consumers! I am assuming deep packet inspection and logging of every site/URL you ever visit will be included for free in this amazing deal, right? Well, sign me up!
6:57 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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A great bargain for consumers! I am assuming deep packet inspection and logging of every site/URL you ever visit will be included for free in this amazing deal, right?


Not only you, anyone (friend, relative, spouse, neighbor, script kiddy who finds a way to connect to your wireless router) who ever visits a web page through your connection will be logged and credited to you too... What a deal!
7:31 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Google is all about data and tracking, and I don't think they're necessarily concerned with whether or not they make money by it. I don't trust Google to handle my Internet connection (and I don't use their DNS, fast though it may be, for similar reasons). But a connection with specs like that is serious enticement, and I can see a lot of people who distrust Google right now being able to look the other way in exchange that kind of speed.

But let's face it - TODAY only very few services can fill up that bandwidth. Video comes to mind, online backup solutions, file sharing, online editing of files (e.g. remote Photoshop). But then? What else?

Checking the weather really fast? ;)
11:07 pm on Feb 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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In summary Google gets closer to the consumers that they want to make money from.

1) They bring their services, and the adverts on them closer to the consumers that want it most (their servers sitting at the end of the pipes).
2) They get to trial innovative services to customers without the interference of ISPs and telcos ("Google, your new bandwidth sucking video app z that is similar to iPlayer is taking up all our bandwidth").
3) They remove the risk that ISPs could shut them off from these customers (I can see them doing buying mobile networks to get their data to customers).
4) They get information on what their customers are really doing away from search engines ("this person is searching for x, but actually downloading y").
5) They get to use their unused fibre assets.

I was always disappointed that the company Digital (DEC) wasn't more all-encompassing, maybe Google can buy the trademark and the domain digital.com and become what I wanted Digital to be?
6:09 am on Feb 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Maybe they can pull data anonymously right at the juicebox, akin to Hitwyse
7:27 pm on Feb 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Google will bundle hardware netbooks with Chrome on it if you want to use their 1GBps service. Always sell advertising on the netbook.
7:31 pm on Feb 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Everything else like Buzz, Orkut, Knoll, Voice, ISP, Books, Groups, Wave etc.... FORGET ABOUT THEM.


The only way they can continue to grow is to develop new things. Some take off, some don't. Working only on what they have would be a bad move(although they could definitely use better customer service for Adwords/Adsense)
3:02 pm on Feb 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

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The only way they can continue to grow is to develop new things. Some take off, some don't. Working only on what they have would be a bad move(although they could definitely use better customer service for Adwords/Adsense)

Lots of companies don't keep getting into anything and everything new and still expand just fine.

Further, your assertation that 'some take off' is false. Google has had exactly 0 hits on anything other than their advertising platform. Nothing. Not gmail, not GA, not buzz, not this, not that, not any of the new 'big hits' they release every two weeks over the last many years. Every one costs money,none of them make money.

The folks at the top just haven't figured out yet that they're a publicly traded company. But I believe that the day is going to come when they're going to get a wakeup call from the stock owners.
3:21 pm on Feb 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

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wheel:

I totally get where you're coming from, but the reality is that Google continues to "print money" [webmasterworld.com]. Their methodology of throwing stuff against the wall to see what sticks doesn't seem to bother them (or their stockholders), and I can't see why they would stop doing it.

I'm not agreeing/disagreeing with you, just trying to point out the reality of it all. Will I be surprised to wake up 5 years from now and see that Google no longer "prints money"? No way. But will I be surprised to wake up 5 years from now and practically own the internet? No way.

To me, as long as people are going to use the internet as way to find information Google will succeed... a lot. Right now, I don't see people making any sort of shift away from that.
9:54 pm on Feb 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

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To me, as long as people are going to use the internet as way to find information Google will succeed... a lot. Right now, I don't see people making any sort of shift away from that.


all they have to do is use someone else to find that info, finding info doesn't mean go to google. All this will soon change as the line of people google has pissed off start working together. Erode google's search traffic and you Erode google's $ machine, then you'll start to see this monster unwind itself.
1:39 am on Feb 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Google's next revolution will be indexing offline books, but until then, they will be toying around with other means to generate revenue.

Actually, Gmail makes money with advertisements and they also sell the Enterprise package which Gmail is a part of. They make money with that. They are converting all sorts of large organizations to their Gmail system.
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