Google is looking to expand its gigabit home Internet service in Texas, and Dallas might be its next fiberhood.
Google Fiber is up and running in Austin and rolling out to San Antonio. Full city expansions can take years to finish, though, because Google builds much of its Fiber infrastructure from scratch. Dallas is no different, with Google only saying that it's "exploring the possibility" of adding the city.
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"Bringing Google Fiber to Dallas would be a huge undertaking," Google wrote in a blog post, "so we want to make sure we're prepared. Working alongside Mayor Mike Rawlings and local leaders, we'll use our Fiber checklist to learn more about local topography, existing infrastructure, and other factors that may impact construction."
Coordinating with city officials has been a critical part of Fiber's expansion, especially in light of the hostile reception Google sometimes gets from its utility company competitors. Google last year benefitted from a city ordinance in Louisville, Kentucky, that allowed it to access already-installed utility poles, but it prompted a lawsuit from AT&T. The Louisville mayor pledged to vigorously defend the suit so that Google Fiber installation can proceed.
In Dallas, Rawlings is similarly friendly to Google Fiber, and his administration is already working with the company to answer questions about city infrastructure, according to the Dallas Morning News. Rawlings told the paper he'll "be pushing for [Google's] product to be accessible to a great amount of our citizens, including those who are not on the higher end of the economic spectrum."
Google has already demonstrated a commitment to connect lower-income communities with Fiber. In Kansas City, it brought the gigabit Internet service to 100 homes in a low-income housing development. It has pledged to do the same for other Google Fiber cities by partnering with the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.
At the same time, Kansas City residents have also experienced what many have feared: lower-speed Fiber won't remain free forever. As of May 19, residents there now have to pay $50 or more a month, depending on what tier they use.