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Google fiber network beta goes live at Stanford

Initial Speedtest results show connectivity over 150Mbps

By Brad Reed, Network World
August 23, 2011 12:49 PM ET

Network World - Some lucky Palo Alto, Calif., residents are getting a glimpse of what Google's new fiber network will soon deliver to Kansas City, Kan.

Google today lit up a beta version of its new experimental fiber network in residential neighborhoods located near Stanford University in Palo Alto. The network will apparently be free to use for students and faculty in the area for the next year before Google unleashes an even larger fiber network in Kansas City.

BACKGROUND: Google building a fiber network in Sprint's backyard

A Reddit user calling itself TheTeam reported late last week that it was connected to the fiber network and was getting download speeds of more than 150Mbps and upload speeds of more than 90Mbps, according to a test run through Speedtest.net. TheTeam described the new network as "better than sliced bread" and pledged to "go on a movie downloading spree" with its newfound high-speed connectivity. TheTeam also said that Google gave residents in the area wireless routers that they installed and attached to the fiber network via Ethernet cable.

"The first thing I did was download a movie," TheTeam wrote on Reddit while gleefully noting that the download took a mere 10 minutes to finish.

Google earlier this year announced that it had selected Kansas City as the site for its new fiber network that promises to deliver download speeds of up to 1Gbps once it's completed. Google's fiber network has also inspired more than 29 universities to start up the new Gig.U initiative that aims to attract service providers to their communities to build out high-speed fiber networks that will deliver the same 1Gbps connectivity that residents and businesses in Kansas City will soon enjoy.

Read more about lans & wans in Network World's LANs & WANs section.

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