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Great Google-ly deadline! Vote by March 26 on super-fast Internet in Fayette

Time is running out for residents to nominate Fayette County for a test-drive of super-fast Internet connections.

Doing so can be done at Google's request page - click on the button for “nominate your community.”

To nominate Fayette County, each user must log in with a Google account, which is free. The deadline for nominations is Friday, March 26.

Google’s Internet service would be provided by fiber connections wired directly to the home, the company has said. The company will be testing new ways to build such networks and has promised to “share key lessons learned with the world.”

The company is accepting proposals from communities across the country and Fayette’s bid group is unified with representatives from local governments working together to convince Google that Fayette is the right place for such a test.

Google has said the network would be “open access” so there would be a choice of multiple service providers.

Local officials hoping to lure Google to use Fayette County as a test site for its ultra-high speed Internet initiative now have some hard facts to help their case.

More than 1,000 residents and businesses have already responded to a survey on Internet usage in Fayette County, according to a Peachtree City news release this week. There is already a demand for high speed broadband access here, with 73 percent of residents and 68 percent of businesses reporting their download speeds were greater than three megabits per second.

The speeds Google is proposing to offer speeds of up to 100 gigabits per second, with service offered at “a competitive price.” The company plans to use a community as a testing grounds for the future of high-speed Internet to firm up what exciting possibilities the future might hold.

The survey showed that 94 percent of businesses responding either used Internet for part of their business or as an amenity in conducting business. Among those business respondents, some 63 percent had “fairly stable” or better reliability, similar figures to those reported by individual residents.

The majority of residents said they paid between $31 and $50 a month for Internet service at home. More than 72 percent of business respondents said their monthly Internet costs were above $41 a month.

The survey was for all residents and businesses in Fayette County. Of the respondents, 63 percent of residents lived in Peachtree City, 17 percent in Fayetteville, 12 percent in unincorporated Fayette and Tyrone with 6 percent; the remainder came from Brooks and Woolsey residents.

Survey respondents from businesses included 53 percent from Peachtree City, 18 percent from Fayetteville, 14.5 percent from unincorporated Fayette and Tyrone with 12 percent.

The survey results are available at www.peachtree-city.org/google.

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