Google has announced plans to build a set of experimental high-speed networks that will provide broadband connectivity at speeds 100 times faster than current US broadband connections.
"Our goal is to experiment with new ways to help make internet access better and faster for everyone," said Google product managers Minnie Ingersoll and James Kelly in a blog post.
"We will test new ways to build fibre networks, and to help inform and support deployments elsewhere, we will share key lessons learned with the world," they said.
Google is advising the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on how to meet a legal mandate to create a national broadband plan to promote better online communication and scientific, economic, and cultural development.
The experimental fibre networks are aimed at demonstrating how to achieve universal, ultra high-speed internet access of one gigabit per second.
"Imagine sitting in a rural health clinic, streaming three-dimensional medical imaging over the web and discussing a unique condition with a specialist in New York," wrote Ingersoll and Kelly.
Google plans to build the ultra-high-speed broadband networks in a small number of trial locations across the US, reaching between 50,000 and 500,000 people.
Such networks will, for example, enable users to download a high-definition, full-length feature film in less than five minutes.
Google also expects that the availability of high-speed internet access will stimulate developers to create applications that have not yet been imagined.
The company said its experimental networks will be operated under "open access" principals, so that users have a choice of service provider, and that its networks will be managed in an open, transparent and non-discriminatory way.
Google has invited government officials and members of the public to nominate their communities to be test participants at Google's website before 26 March.