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FCC Chairman calls for gigabit internet in all 50 states by 2015

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FCC Julius Genachowski Vox Media
FCC Julius Genachowski Vox Media

Google Fiber is finally bringing gigabit internet speeds to users in Kansas City, but that's not good enough for the FCC. Chairman Julius Genachoski just issued the "Gigabit City Challenge" — he wants to see all 50 states have at least one community with gigabit internet by 2015. "American economic history teaches a clear lesson about infrastructure. If we build it, innovation will come," Genachowski said in a statement. "The U.S. needs a critical mass of gigabit communities nationwide so that innovators can develop next-generation applications and services that will drive economic growth and global competitiveness."

To meet Genachowski's aggressive goal, we'll need to see a lot more providers than Google step up their game in the next few years. Gigabit internet remains scarce in the US, though Seattle is joining Kansas City with hopes to have a fiber-based gigabit internet network up and running before long. Eric Schmidt also recently reaffirmed Google's plans to roll Google Fiber out in more markets soon. Overall, the FCC said that there are 42 communities across 14 states with access to high speed, fiber-based internet, so the challenge is off to a good start — we're hoping that every state has access to this superfast connectivity sooner than later. Of course, this will take a lot of cooperation between broadband providers and local government, but hopefully the FCC can help push this plan along.