Google Fiber is gearing up to expand beyond fiber-optic cable in a big way. A new filing with the FCC reveals plans to test its experimental wireless service in up to 24 U.S. locations, potentially removing the need for a physical hookup.
The filing notes that Google would spend two years testing the service, though it wouldn’t be available for consumer use. Instead, the wireless internet would be limited to employees and “trusted testers. The company is already experimenting with similar technology in Kansas City, which was the first city to get Google Fiber.
“We are working to test the viability of a wireless network that relies on newly available spectrum,” a Google Fiber spokesperson told Business Insider. “The project is in early stages today, but we hope this technology can one day help deliver more abundant Internet access to consumers.”
Google Fiber’s original plan to install fiber-optic cables in cities and towns along the country is still chugging along, but it’s a slow and complicated process. Switching to wireless would make it a lot easier to expand quickly, and the company may have even delayed launch plans in two Silicon Valley cities to focus on the new strategy instead. If this pays off, we could see Google Fiber start to reach new cities a lot faster within the next few years.