Back in 2010, Google announced plans to build out a fiber-optic network for an entire city in the U.S., promising connection speeds of 1GB/sec, 100 times that of the norm. Naturally, over 1,000 cities applied. But only one could claim the prize, and that one was Kansas City.
At the time, Google said that it planned to begin service in the first quarter of 2012, with coverage rolling out all over Kansas City thereafter, with pricing competitive to that of other ISPs. It’s not clear whether Google will be able to meet its deadlines, but in the meantime, Kansas City is getting rolling.
Ahead of Google Fiber’s roll out, Think Big Partners, an early-stage startup accelerator and mentorship-based collaborative network, created a business plan competition called Gigabit Challenge, with cash prizes, promised investments, and more for the winners. The Challenge focused on innovative tech ideas that would use the Google Fiber network as a launchpad, bringing sustainable business ventures to the Kansas City ecosystem.
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