Ever since Google Fiber announced Kansas City as its first fiber project, techies across the nation have wondered how gigabit Internet will shape a new wave of innovation and how the city would tap its new infrastructure.
And thanks to a new KC Digital Drive initiative, Kansas Citians may have an up-close look at the next generation of applications using blazing-fast gigabit Internet.
The nonprofit tech organization recently announced the Gigabit City Lab, a first-of-its-kind volunteer test panel designed to help gigabit developers and users collaborate on apps of the future. The Gigabit City Lab will provide its members with early access to apps built for ultrafast fiber connections. It is designed for fiber subscribers but open to anyone with an Internet connection.
Members of the Gigabit City Lab will have the opportunity to test drive new software apps and products that are optimized for gigabit connections and then provide feedback via an online community. The lab’s first subject will be Fitnet, a social fitness app that turns 5-minute workout videos into interactive experiences through kinetic sensors already on one’s smartphone or tablet.
Aaron Deacon, managing director for KC Digital Drive, hopes that the idea of Kansas City’s gigabit lab will eventually spread to the world.
“Our hope is that the builders of the gigabit experiences of the future will recognize Kansas City as their go-to test bed and come to us when they want to try something new and possibly revolutionary,” he said.
A gigabit connection is not required to join the lab, and there is no cost to participate in the program. Early adopters and gigabit aficionados are encouraged to sign up at gigabitcitylab.com.