In a move that’s sure to alarm Time Warner Cable and AT&T U-verse, Google just announced plans to offer its fiber optic internet and digital TV service to the community of Olathe, KS. After observing Google’s success in Kansas City, the Olathe city council approved Google’s plan to expand its fiber optic network into their city.
In a blog post celebrating the latest announcement, Google Fiber Community Manager Rachel Hack wrote: “Hopefully, this is the first of several announcements that we’ll be able to make about bringing Google Fiber to additional cities in the KC metro area.”
Olathe is already served by Time Warner Cable and AT&T U-verse, though the community can definitely benefit from more competition and choices. Google Fiber is the 2nd pure fiber optic network after Verizon FiOS, though Google offers the fastest broadband service in the nation at 1000 Mbps (1 Gbps).
In addition, the internet search giant is planning to build out its fiber network in Westwood, Westwood Hills, and Mission Woods, KS after it obtains municipal approval.
Though Google has yet to reveal how many residents have signed up for the service, the reviews so far from existing customers are very promising, to say the least. Customers are extremely happy with the internet speed and price point, which should make Time Warner Cable and AT&T U-verse nervous.
Of course, the only proper response is for the competition to offer comparable or better service. So far, Time Warner Cable and AT&T have pledged to offer higher internet speeds, though it is still not as fast as Google Fiber. If other internet and pay TV providers want to keep their customers, they shouldn’t place their bets on Google staying in Kansas. It looks like Google will be expanding until there is no place else to expand to—and if that doesn’t shake the competition out of complacency, then nothing will.