Towns lining up for shot at superfast Google network

The March 26 deadline for applications for the Google Fiber for Communities lottery is quickly approaching and some communities, apparently unwilling to wait for a national broadband plan, are pulling out all the stops to be at the top of the list.

Google says it will build a data network capable of delivering 1 Gbps data speeds to prove how fast the Internet can be and will work with local governments to obtain rights of way to install equipment. The service won't be free, but it will be competitive with much slower existing broadband services from cable operators.

In Massachusetts, the town of Shrewsbury made a 3D movie to impress Google and Quincy residents developed a music video. Topeka, Kan. one-upped those efforts by renaming itself Google for the month of March while Duluth, Minn. put out a YouTube video saying that every first-born son in the city would be named Google Fiber and first-born daughters would be Googlette Fiber. Perhaps this kind of enthusiasm explains why Time Warner's Landel Hobbs recently noted that his cable operator is more interested in high-speed data than video entertainment.

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