Google To Build National Wifi Network?

Lynne Kiesling

According to Slashdot, Google is buying up lots of unused fiber capacity and building a backbone from which it could build a wi-fi network, and is considering making access free. The Business 2.0 link here is a very informative article, containing a lot of information about the vertical transaction structure of the Internet.

This development is also interesting in the context of the Brand X and FCC DSL decisions lately. I’ve been doing some background reading so I can comment more intelligently on them, which I hope to do this week.


One thought on “Google To Build National Wifi Network?

  1. Here’s the part of the article I find interesting for teaching purposes:

    “An even more compelling reason for Google to build its own network is that it could save the company millions of dollars a month. Here’s why: Every time a user performs a search on Google, the data is transmitted over a network owned by an ISP — say, Comcast (CMCSK) — which links up with Google’s servers via a wholesaler like AboveNet. When AboveNet bridges that gap between Google and Comcast, Google has to pay as much as $60 per megabit in IP transit fees. As Google adds bandwidth-intensive services, those costs will increase. Big networks owned by the likes of AT&T (T) get around transit fees by striking “peering” arrangements, in which the networks swap traffic and no money is exchanged. By cutting out middlemen like AboveNet, Google could share traffic directly with ISPs to avoid fees.”

    Seems to me that the author mistakes movements of money for opportunity costs…

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