Google has announced plans to build a series of 1Gbit/s fibre optic broadband networks across the US, and is looking for volunteer communities.
The search giant said that it will offer ultra high-speed internet services at a "competitive price", but will also open its networks to the competition.
Google said in a blog post that it is looking for communities of 50,000 to 500,000 people, and asked for submissions from council leaders or individuals.
"We want to try out new ways to build and operate fibre networks and share what we learn with the world," said James Kelly, a product manager on Google's infrastructure team.
"We are going to operate open-access networks, meaning that we will share our networks with other service providers, giving users more choice."
Google said that it also wants developers to work on new "killer" applications that could take advantage of this bandwidth, and that it will share the techniques it uses to build and maintain the network with the rest of the world.
Julius Genachowski, chairman of the US Federal Communications Commission, applauded the news.
"Big broadband creates big opportunities," he said in a statement. "This significant trial will provide an American testbed for the next generation of innovative, high-speed internet apps, devices and services."
Google has operated a free Wi-Fi service in Mountain View, California, where it has its headquarters, since 2006.
"We hope this will serve as an example to other network operators that the open model should not be feared, but should be emulated. Profit and openness are mistakenly seen to be in conflict," said Markham Erickson, executive director of the Open Internet Coalition.
"Ultrafast and open broadband will not only provide a new and exciting platform for the next generation of internet services and apps, but will hopefully inject new life into the extinct third-party ISP marketplace."
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