Broadband-resistant Kansas City could provide a challenge for Google

Contrary to the song from "Oklahoma," everything is not up to date in Kansas City, Kan. In fact, when it comes to broadband, the city is below the national average. But Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) thinks it can change that.

Google has placed a stake in the Kansas City ground to demonstrate that ultra high-speed broadband can not only succeed, but profitably flourish, doing what the cable industry "has been unable or unwilling to do: Internet speeds from 10 to 100 times above what most Americans consider broadband," reported the Kansas City Star in an in-depth look at how the region might react to the offering.

Google told the newspaper that its network, which will leverage a large amount of dark fiber already available in Kansas City, is expected to make money while delivering unprecedented service. "Implied in the move is an oft-repeated criticism: The cable industry could do this, but it doesn't--because there's not enough competition to force the upgrades," the story said.

Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC), the incumbent provider, begged to differ. It's offering faster service (50 Mbps for $100 a month) and has found that demand doesn't match the cost for pushing fiber deeper into the city. "We know what we're going to provide. We're going to offer as fast a speed as we can at the lowest price we can," TWC spokesman Matt Derrick told the newspaper.

Kansas City was selected for the network from over 1,000 of U.S. communities.

For more:
- the Kansas City Star has this story

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