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AT&T eyes high-speed Internet in 100 cities

Doug Gross, CNN
An AT&T facility in Charlotte, North Carolina, handles the company's wireless communications in much of that state.
An AT&T facility in Charlotte, North Carolina, handles the company's wireless communications in much of that state.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • AT&T looks to bring high-speed Internet to 21 major metro areas
  • AT&T U-Verse With GigaPower offers speeds up to 1 gigabit per second
  • The move would compete with Google Fiber with similar speed

(CNN) -- AT&T has announced a plan that could see high-speed fiber Internet networks rolled out in as many as 100 cities in 21 metro regions throughout the United States.

It's a move that puts the telecommunications company in a head-to-head battle with Google, which has begun its own charge to dramatically Increase internet speeds in various cities.

The network, called AT&T U-verse With GigaPower, is able to deliver broadband at up to 1 gigabit per second. That's roughly 100 times faster than current speeds in many parts of the nation.

The company plans to enter discussions with local leaders in areas it has identified as having suitable existing networks and likely high demand for the service.

"This initiative continues AT&T's ongoing commitment to economic development in these communities, bringing jobs, advanced technologies and infrastructure," the company said in a news release.

The metropolitan areas being considered are: Atlanta; Augusta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Chicago; Cleveland; Fort Worth, Texas; Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Greensboro, North Carolina; Houston; Jacksonville, Florida; Kansas City, Kansas; Los Angeles; Miami; Nashville; Oakland, California; Orlando, Florida; San Antonio, Texas; San Diego; St. Louis; San Francisco, and San Jose.

AT&T had already announced plans to install the high-speed network in Austin and Dallas, Texas, and says it is in "advanced discussions" with Raleigh-Durham and Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

It's worth emphasizing that none of this is a guarantee yet. More likely, it's AT&T publicly pointing out locations it thinks are good candidates for network upgrades.

Google, meanwhile, first launched Google Fiber in 2012. That service also promises speeds of 1 gigabit per second, which the company says could allow someone at full capacity to download an entire feature-length movie in 38 seconds.

Google has already brought the service to Kansas City, Kansas; and Provo, Utah and plans to roll out in Austin, Texas, by the end of this year. Google connects fiberoptic cables directly to a home or office in order to give users broadband Internet and television service.

In Kansas City and Provo, Google's ultra-fast Internet service costs $70 a month for Internet, or $120 if you add streaming video.

In February, Google said it's exploring plans to lay down the special cables in nine more metro areas: Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville, Phoenix, Portland, Raleigh-Durham, Salt Lake City, San Antonio and San Jose. That includes 34 cities in those regions.

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