Google Fiber Confirms Webpass Acquisition

Google Fibers Confirms Webpass AcquisitionGoogle Fiber’s new embrace of wireless technology started to to solidify a bit more this Monday following Google’s acquisition of WebPass. Google has said that the provider will feature prominently into its plans for the deployment of high speed internet.  Google Fiber President, Dennis Kish, has noted that Webpass assists the company in its strategy “going forward with a hybrid approach with wireless playing an integral part.” Kish added, “Webpass has proven that point-to-point wireless is a reliable way to connect more people to high-speed Internet in a densely populated environment by setting up wireless transmission links between buildings.” The specifics regarding the deal were not disclosed.

Webpass began in 2003, and offers bandwidth of up to 1Gbps, mirroring the Google Fiber approach. The provider already has thousands of subscribers in San Francisco, Boston, San Diego, Miami, and Chicago. Google Fiber, along with its competitors are hoping to dominate these 5 cities for internet connectivity.

Webpass’ Point-to-Point Wireless typically refers to microwave transmissions between buildings or campus settings, which can be suitable for providing apartments, dormitories, and condominiums with internet service. It hasn’t been financially feasible for Webpass to bring its high speed network to residential homes yet, so it won’t be able to fully replace Fiber’s wired internet service.

Google is hoping to decrease its costs for deploying fast internet services in densely developed areas where wired technology may prove to be costly. Webpass installs data jacks into residential homes to complete connections to wireless technologies.

This past August, a report surfaced detailing that the Google Fiber would use wireless technology in a number of cities after experiencing some roadblocks with its wired technology plans. Google is currently testing multiple outdoor locations in Kansas City that relies on 3.5 GHz wireless spectrum. the test was the first approved by the city in April and is expected to continue for 18 months. The spectrum would be shared dynamically between users following a concept called the Citizens Broadband Radio Service by the FCC.

This 3.5GHz technology in Kansas CIty would be separate from services offered by Webpass. Analysts have said that its almost certain that Google Fiber is looking to create city wide broadband networks that will connect a variety of devices including smartphones and desktop computers. Verizon, AT&T, and other traditional wireless providers are working to expand their fiber optic networks in order to supplant existing 4G LTE networks.

Doug Atkinson
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