Broadband Internet: Google delays announcing test cities

Broadband Internet experiments are still on, Google says, but it needs more time to pick its test locations.

Julia Cheng/AP/File
In this March photo, Don Ness, mayor of Duluth, Minn., stands on the roof of City Hall, overlooking the neighborhood known as the Central Hillside. Mayor Ness has thrown his support to the Google Twin Ports Initiative, a grass-roots effort to win selection of Duluth as one of a handful of sites around the country where Google Inc. will build experimental, ultra-high speed broadband Internet networks. Nearly 1,100 US communities have expressed an interest in hosting the experiment.

Google Inc. said it is not quite ready to decide where it will build an experimental, ultra-high-speed broadband network that will provide Internet connections that are 100 times faster than the connections most Americans get from their phone and cable companies today.

In February, Google announced plans to build a handful of test-bed fiber-optic networks to deliver broadband Internet speeds of 1 gigabit per second to as many as 500,000 Americans. The company had planned to pick locations for the new network or networks by the end of the year.

But in a blog post on Wednesday, Google said that after hearing from nearly 1,100 interested communities, it needs a little more time to decide. The company said it hopes to make a final selection by early next year.

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