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Google Wants 10 Gigabit Internet Speeds: Fast Enough?

By - Source: USA Today | B 46 comments

Google has a need for speed.

This week during the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet conference, Google Chief Financial Officer Patrick Pichette revealed that the company is currently working on technology that will enable faster data transfer speeds over the Internet than what's currently offered on Google Fiber, which is 1 gigabyte per second. Google is shooting for 10 gigabytes per second, or 10 Gbps.

This makes perfect sense. Google provides software as a service (SaaS) such as Gmail, Google Drive and so on, which is basically cloud-based on-demand software. The faster the speeds, the more these types of services will be used, and the larger the data will become. All this cloud-based software will eventually become the norm, and will rely on super-fast data streams like Google Fiber and beyond.

"That's where the world is going. It's going to happen," Pichette said. "[It may happen over a decade, but] why wouldn't we make it available in three years? That's what we're working on. There's no need to wait."

Currently, consumers really don't need a 1 Gbps connection. Netflix alone only requires 5 to 7 Mbps to stream Super HD, 6 to 12 Mbps to stream 3D, and around 15 Mbps for 4K video.  "It's not too bad. If you've got a 50-megabit connection you'll be fine," says Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

Google isn't the only company with a need for more speed. A team of UK researchers revealed in 2013 that they achieved wireless data transmission speeds of 10 Gbps using "Li-Fi," a networking technology that relies on light. Using a micro-LED light bulb, the scientists managed to transmit 3.5 Gbps across each primary color: Yellow, Red and Blue.

Currently, Google Fiber is available in Kansas City, and there are plans to build "Fiberhoods" in Austin, Texas, and Provo, Utah.

Google provides three plans to choose from: Free Internet with a basic DSL-like connection, Gigabit Internet for $70 per month, and Gigabit + TV for $120 per month. Both paid plans provide 1 TB of cloud storage across Gmail, Drive and Google Plus. However, the Gigabit + TV package includes a Nexus 7 tablet, a set-top box, a digital video storage box, and a router, or "Network Box." This plan also requires a 2-year contract.

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Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    ScrewySqrl , February 14, 2014 12:37 PM
    Well, if Comcast gets Time warner, top speeds will stay around 10 megabit, throttled to <1 megabit for netflix
Other Comments
  • 16 Hide
    Damon Palovaara , February 14, 2014 12:37 PM
    I thought 1gbs and 10gbs meant gigabit, not gigabytes. There is an 8x difference
  • 12 Hide
    ScrewySqrl , February 14, 2014 12:37 PM
    Well, if Comcast gets Time warner, top speeds will stay around 10 megabit, throttled to <1 megabit for netflix
  • 14 Hide
    madvsfool , February 14, 2014 12:43 PM
    Now Tom's authers cannot distinguish between Gigabit and Gigabyte? 1 Gigabyte is 8 Gigabit. They are not the same thing. Do the reseaching before posting the article!
  • -7 Hide
    lancelot123 , February 14, 2014 12:55 PM
    Lots of people make typos pertaining bits and bytes, no need to get hostile with the guy for making a very common mistake. Just politely let him know, there is no need to be a dick about it.
  • 16 Hide
    Soda-88 , February 14, 2014 12:57 PM
    Quote:
    Google is shooting for 10 gigabytes per second, or 10 Gbps.
    Laughed my ass off.
  • 12 Hide
    nicodemus_mm , February 14, 2014 12:59 PM
    Gbps =/= gigabyte... it's gigabit.Kinda sad for a publication that focuses on tech.
  • -4 Hide
    krakhen , February 14, 2014 1:30 PM
    Come on guys! That must have been a typo... the title does say Gigabit
  • 6 Hide
    xiinc37 , February 14, 2014 1:44 PM
    10Gbps... 1.65x faster than my Sata III SSDs. I think a better goal would be to get everybody on 1Gbps before worrying about anything faster than that. It doesn't make much sense to give the select few 10Gbps when the rest of us are still stuck on 10mbps.
  • 1 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , February 14, 2014 1:48 PM
    Redundant news article of the day?
  • 0 Hide
    Kruelness , February 14, 2014 1:56 PM
    I have 50mbps for like $60 CAD/ month , I can get 100 for like $20 more if I need it... sooo pass
  • 3 Hide
    bison88 , February 14, 2014 2:04 PM
    If it helps bring down 10GbE NICS and or bring them to the masses then I am all for it. As it is though, unless targeted towards businesses, it's kind of a useless gesture at this point. I doubt the external infrastructure could even support 10GbE users as many with Google Fiber are all ready reporting that the closest they can get to maxing their pipe is by parallelizing multiple downloads from half a dozen sources.
  • -7 Hide
    austenwhd , February 14, 2014 2:04 PM
    What's the point? There is no storage device that can write at that speed, a mere 100mbps downstream speed is more than enough until SSD or HDD or the next technology catches up to already available bandwidth norms.
  • 6 Hide
    nvllsvm , February 14, 2014 2:19 PM
    Quote:
    What's the point? There is no storage device that can write at that speed, a mere 100mbps downstream speed is more than enough until SSD or HDD or the next technology catches up to already available bandwidth norms.
    The point is 640K was not enough for everybody.
  • 4 Hide
    velocityg4 , February 14, 2014 3:00 PM
    First you need to get 10 GbE to realistic consumer prices. I don't really see what the holdup is. I've had gigabit Ethernet for over a decade now in my home computers. Gigabit switchs have been dirt cheap for quite a while now. It seems that the steps from 10 to 100 to 1000 where all quite quick. Then it just stalled.
  • 9 Hide
    daekar , February 14, 2014 3:03 PM
    Screw the speed, ditch the bandwidth caps. I don't understand why people are scrambling for such speed when the services are specifically set up to guarantee you can't use it. The cloud isn't going to take off in a big way until that changes.
  • 0 Hide
    tolham , February 14, 2014 3:32 PM
    what they really need to work on is wireless internet. the US is too big to keep upgrading cable infrastructure.
  • 4 Hide
    itsnotmeitsyou , February 14, 2014 4:40 PM
    Quote:
    Getting 110-120 mbs down 25 up with Comcast now for $100 a month, plenty fast for me until they decide to go 1 Gigabit.
    interesting. People with Google Fiber are getting 10x the down, and 40x the up, for $30 *Less* than what you are paying Comcast. I realize that not everyone has access to Google Fiber, I dont, but FFS, how can you people be hating on progressive tech?
  • 1 Hide
    austenwhd , February 14, 2014 5:04 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    What's the point? There is no storage device that can write at that speed, a mere 100mbps downstream speed is more than enough until SSD or HDD or the next technology catches up to already available bandwidth norms.
    The point is 640K was not enough for everybody.


    640K???
  • 2 Hide
    singemagique , February 14, 2014 5:33 PM
    I just want a reliable internet connection that is usable during prime time. Right now my "Ultra" connection from Frontier, which is rated at 12mbps down, gets around 1.5mbps down in the evenings because they oversold the local node. +1 for 'high speed' access in rural America...fml
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