Comparison between AT&T and proposed Google internet service

At the CSNA meeting last night, I reported on the nascent effort to bring Google high speed internet investment to Evanston. Many people were concerned about a repeat of the ugly V-RAD boxes littering our parkways. The following is a response from another attendee to the first meeting held 2/23/10.
From Neal Daringer:
The AT&T U-Verse service in Evanston is not fiber. I don't work for AT&T so I might be wrong on that. I did have the U-Verse service for about a year though. AT&T U-Verse is a Fiber to the Node(FTTN) product. Which means that I never actually saw the fiber optic cable. AT&T still used the existing phone wiring in the home. The google method, as far as I know, is Fiber to the Home(FTTH). The fiber would actually come into the home. I have read that fiber optic cables have virtually unlimited capacity for speed. Which means that it can grow to meet demand. I have heard of cases where AT&T did use FTTH, but I have heard of none in Evanston.

Verizon offers a simliar service to AT&T, except they actually did run the fiber optic cable to the home. So, just going on that assumption, I would imagine it would be a simliar offering to what Google has in mind, at least from a technical standpoint. A great article documenting an installation is located at this link,  There are excellent pictures there as well. Just from the pictures, it appears that the visible equipment used for the service is far less intrusive than the AT&T offering.


Here is the Google URL that explains Google's plans to bring fiber optic 1 Gigabyte internet connections to a selected number of communities accross the United States:  Overall, it seems like a good thing to me.  However, as you will see if you read the entire web site (which won't take you long), there are lots of things left very vague or unsaid.  What would concern me most is, if to get Google to install the fiber optics system, the City of Evanston would have to cough up financial support.  If that is the case, then I would be hesitant to use our limited tax dollars to help a multinational coorporation compete in the marketplace.
Peter Sanchez