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View Full Version : Google set to connect its entire home town to Internet for free


Kunal
Aug 18th, 2006, 01:23 PM
http://www.usatoday.com/tech/wireless/2006-08-16-google-free-wifi_x.htm?POE=TECISVA (http://)

By Michael Liedtke, Associated Press
SAN FRANCISCO — Google on Wednesday plans to offer free, high-speed Internet access to everyone in its Silicon Valley home town — a hospitable gesture that the online search leader hopes to see spread to other parts of the country.
The new wireless, or "Wi-Fi," network, is believed to establish Mountain View, Calif., as the largest U.S. city with totally free Internet access available throughout the entire community, according to both Google and city officials.

St. Cloud, Fla., a suburb of Orlando with a population of about 28,000, had claimed that mantle earlier this year after it launched a free Wi-Fi network.

About 72,000 people reside in Mountain View, an 11.5-square-mile city located about 35 miles south of San Francisco. As the home to major companies like Google and VeriSign, Mountain View's daytime population can swell above 100,000.

"We aren't concerned about being able to handle the load," said Chris Sacca, a Google executive who oversaw the Mountain View project. "We think we have built a pretty cool, robust network."

Similar Wi-Fi networks are under development in many other cities, including Philadelphia and Chicago, but most of those envision charging for Internet access.

Small pockets of free Wi-Fi access — often called "hot spots" — have become increasingly common throughout the United States, often cropping up in downtown districts or by coffee shops and fast-foot restaurants hoping to lure in customers.

Google's community-wide network has had Mountain View buzzing in anticipation, said City Manager Kevin Duggan.

"There's a lot of excitement," he said. "It's something we could have never anticipated a few years ago when we were just excited to be able to pay for dial-up access to the Internet. Now our entire town is a hot spot."

Google invested about $1 million to build the Mountain View Network and expects to have to spend far less than that each year to keep it running. The financial commitment represents a pittance for Google, which has nearly $10 billion in cash.

Powered by 380 radio antennae, the Mountain View Network is supposed to surf the Web at speeds comparable to the Internet connections delivered by digital subscriber, or DSL lines. It will be slightly slower than a high-speed cable connection.

Still, Google believes the free service will be fast enough to prompt some Mountain View residents to stop paying DSL and cable providers for Internet access. People who take that step will probably want to spend $30 to $170 for a Wi-Fi modem to improve the connection to Google's free service, Sacca said.

Web surfers using the Google service will have to log on, but once they're connected they will be able to sign off without losing access, Sacca said. The network is "very naive," so it won't track people's online activities when they aren't on a Google site, Sacca said.

Like many Internet companies, Google has an incentive to ensure people have easy and cheap access to the Internet because its profits depend on Web surfers navigating through waves of online ads.

Toward that end, Google last year decided to help develop free Wi-Fi networks in Mountain View, the company's home since 1999, and San Francisco, where many of its employees live. Google doesn't expect to undertake similar projects elsewhere, partly because so many other companies are angling to build Wi-Fi networks in hundreds of other cities, Sacca said.

In contrast to the Mountain View network, Google decided to team up with another company, EarthLink Inc., to build San Francisco's Wi-Fi network. The San Francisco plan envisions EarthLink charging roughly $20 per month to surf at the top available speed while Google will offer a free service that transmits data at a much slower rate.

Negotiations on the San Francisco network still haven't been completed, making it unlikely it will be switched on until next year.

Pureracket
Aug 18th, 2006, 02:13 PM
Little does that town know that its citizens every site that it visit, Google will chart it in a "confidential" file without feeling necessary to explain the reason why.

controlfreak
Aug 18th, 2006, 03:26 PM
I would be extremely wary of connecting my computer to such a large network. Even if it features external security measures such as WEP, there are bound to be dozens of malicious users inside the network who could compromise my personal data in seconds.

samsung101
Aug 18th, 2006, 03:49 PM
When will Google stop cooperating with China and
blocking out sites to please the Communist leadership?

That would be a better step.


I like Google, it's fun, easy, and that map stuff is great.

But, even in the news section, their left wing bias shows
up very clearly with the news sources they show up.
Ditto for Yahoo.

Which is too bad. A generation is using these outlets
to get information.

Too bad it's very filtered 'news' and information they're
getting from the top two internet search engines. Filtered
towards the Left.

Except in China...and other nations that ask Google to
NOT allow certain info in, and they get paid to do it -
in billions.

Kunal
Aug 23rd, 2006, 11:34 AM
well i didnt really know that they were filtered towards the left.

google does have an image of a hippie organization which i think is quite cool.

they are really pushing the envelope in terms of using the benefits of technology now instead of announcing all the time that we will launch this or that in year 2 thousand something

RVD
Aug 23rd, 2006, 07:05 PM
Little does that town know that its citizens every site that it visit, Google will chart it in a "confidential" file without feeling necessary to explain the reason why.DAMMIT Pureracket!! You did it again! Get out of my head! :haha :haha: :yeah:

I personally don't trust corporate freebies. :scared:
This smacks of some huge governmental/technological testing project.

*stranger offers naive youth candy..."Here, eat this. Trust me it's safe." :scared:

jbeacinu
Aug 23rd, 2006, 07:59 PM
Aww too bad that is no where I live

Mforensic
Aug 23rd, 2006, 11:17 PM
google uses adware and spyware.....so free googlers beware!