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Google Becoming The Next AT&T

Now I don’t mean this in a derogatory way, but when I read Thomas Anglero’s piece on what Google is assembling with their femtocell investments, all that dark fiber they own, and the fact they want that 700Mhz spectrum that’s going on the auction block in a couple of years, I can’t do much more than nod my head in agreement.

If this is truly what they are putting together, then we’ve got another AT&T on our hands, meaning another nationwide carrier. Given the former Baby Bells are merging back together, and nobody in their right mind is going to build out “last mile” infrastructure anymore, having a totally wireless play with a metric ton of fiber backhaul to feed it makes a lot of sense. And 700Mhz is some prime real estate, too, given both the propagation and penetration characteristics of broadcasts in that frequency range.

There are, of course, a ton of questions: will Google allow anyone to build a handset for their network? Will they partner with someone like Nokia to build handsets? Are they going to pull a FON and give away femtocell boxes to rapidly build their network? There are plenty of questions and plenty of thoughts to go around on this, so please share in the comments.


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