How Google Fiber Should Change Rural Communities

With all the talk about Google Fiber here in Kansas City and the recent announcement that Olathe, KS is now on the list of next cities to get Google Fiber, I keep wishing I would get something faster soon. You see, I don’t live in town, Lenexa, Overland Park, Leawood, Shawnee, etc. I live out in the country.

The best I can get is some really slow DSL but then I need to purchase a land line phone service too. So instead, we have high speed satellite internet. We have had it for 2 years and while it sounds great with the speeds you get, satellites are very expensive and have a limited amount of bandwidth space. To ensure everyone gets to use it, they cap your bandwidth each month. Ours is 20GB a month.

That means we can’t utilize a lot of cloud services or online movie rentals and so forth because they use a lot of bandwidth. I could watch 3 movies and I would be done with all internet usage for the month. Not cool.

The other issue is there is a lag from my house, up to the satellite in space, back to earth, finding the server/data, beaming back up to the satellite in space, and back down to my house. Geesh. No online game playing and it takes forever to upload files to and from a web server. Streaming is fine once the stream starts but again, limited bandwidth. Regular web surfing you kinda feel like you’re on dial-up again when you click a link but once it starts to load it’s there right away, just a lag time.

In step Google Fiber. What I would LOVE to see happen is Google to take the initiative to provide their great service to rural communities in a different way. Yes it would be stupid expensive to lay fiber where you only have a customer every half mile or so. Not like in a city where in that same half mile you have a hundred customers.

Instead, let’s see Google run their fiber to these rural communities to a wireless antenna that could service several square miles with broadband speed internet. Not gigabit, but heck if you could give me 5MB with no bandwidth cap…show me where I can sign up.

4G mobile devices were on my radar as a fix for this until they started capping those which makes them useless for home use. Is there a reason Google couldn’t do this or shouldn’t do this?

I know their initiative is to give gigabit speeds to millions of people and businesses (well not give, but for a cheap price) and expand the productivity and the crazy cool things we all can do with it. Don’t forget about us in the rural communities. The farmers who raise the cows, chickens, and pigs…who grow the corn and beans that helps to feed not only our country but the world. Don’t leave the rural folks behind.

I live there for the peace and quiet and to have space. I’ll get by with my satellite internet bandwidth caps rather than move back to the city. But there are a lot of us out there and if Google really wants to make a difference…don’t forget about us too.