Omaha is the next city to announce that fiber optic, ultra-fast Internet will be available within its city limits. CenturyLink is launching a pilot in the city to bring download speeds of one gigabit per second—that's up to 100 times faster than normal broadband speeds—to 48,000 homes and businesses in West Omaha by October 2013. If this pilot goes well, CenturyLink will expand the service to the rest of Omaha within the next two years, but the initial service will be available for the first 9,800 customers as early as May 6, 2013.
This is good news for Omaha because many of the high growth businesses in the city are high tech or Web-based, so faster download speeds means higher productivity. Even non-tech industries such as banking and healthcare can benefit just by virtue of not having to wait as long for information to upload or download, so they can service their customers better. The city is also hoping that the new gigabit service will attract even more technology-based companies, bringing more of these jobs to Omaha.
For homeowners, the new speed means that simple things like streaming movies, playing games, and even talking on video calling services like Skype will be significantly faster. It's also a plus for homes with multiple devices because there will be little bandwidth restraint. The residential service cost will be $79.95 per month when bundled with other services or $149.95 per month by itself.