A new initiative to improve broadband connectivity in New York City could award New York Start ups with free fiber connections. After years of being criticized as having inadequate broadband despite being a major global business hub -- New York's Mayor Bloomberg recently launched an initiative to prod companies like Time Warner Cable
to ramp up fiber availability. Time Warner has tried, inaccurately, to equate this $25 million belated expansion of business fiber to what Google's doing in Kansas City
According to Mayor Bloomberg's office, the new project involves a suite of initiatives including ConnectNYC -- a competition to build out fiber services for commercial buildings, a grading program for connectivity in New York City buildings, a crowd-sourced digital map highlighting wired buildings citywide, a streamlined process for broadband build regulations, and a competition to develop mobile applications to help residents access critical services provided by the City and community-based organizations.
Bloomberg has now launched the ConnectNYC Fiber Challenge
, which urges companies with less than 100 employees to apply here
if they're interested in winning free fiber connections. Total awards to businesses will tally $12 million over a two year period, with up to $7 million distributed this year. The city says the average deployment for winners will be around $50,000.