The promise behind Google’s ambitious Google Fiber project has always been a twofer. One, that people who were already on the Internet would upgrade to blazingly-fast 1-gigabit service that is a hundred times more robust than average U.S. broadband connections. And two, that people who weren’t already online would be attracted to the company’s slower but inexpensive service made possible by the new fiber optic cable running through their cities.
But the latter, according to those on the ground and some new research, isn’t happening in Google Fiber’s flagship city of Kansas City. The company’s efforts to drive down the cost of broadband isn’t yet working in some of the city’s most challenged neighborhoods.
Google Fiber is getting criticized in some places, but not every city has the same approach (or lack thereof) to universal access. Because of a prior municipal fiber build, in Provo, Utah, Google Fiber will be available to everybody.