Fast Internet in Rural America?

Fast Internet in Rural America?

Google may eventually have the answer

Finding a reliable and fast internet connection in rural areas can be frustrating. I know firsthand. Part of my responsibilities in a previous job included surveying the options for telecommunication at a variety of farm office locations. Often that research included service options that skipped over traditional line-based technology because cable and DSL were out of reach, or very expensive to expand.

Data through cellular providers, satellite internet service and even broadband over power lines were some interesting and viable options that I came across, but speed was almost always an issue.

Do you know what city has one of the fastest internet speeds in the nation? Not New York City, not Los Angeles and not Chicago, but Kansas City.

That’s right, Kansas.

In 2011, Google announced that Kansas City would become the first city for the Google Fiber project. Google Fiber promises and provides speeds 100 times faster than standard internet connection. The basic service is free, and high speeds with television service include a monthly cost, but for those of us who rely upon the internet for work (and almost everything), it would be a difficult proposition to turn down.

Google Fiber has since expanded to 17 surrounding cities in Kansas and Missouri, and Google has expanded the project to two more seemingly unlikely locations of Provo, Utah and Austin, Texas.

What does this mean for you? It means that faster internet speeds are coming, and every day more opportunities arise to help you find a fast and reliable internet connection for your farm office. Providers are getting creative, and they are finding ways to reach out to you and your business.

Looking for a broadband internet options for your farm office, check out www.broadband.gov/rural_areas.html.

Have other ideas?  Share them with me in the comments below, on Twitter @nerdsquawk or via email at jessica@nerdsquawk.com.

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