Google exec frustrated at San Francisco contract negotiation tactics, delays: The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Chris Sacca, Google's lead in its partnership with Google to put Wi-Fi in that city, is frustrated with the delays that the city has introduced into producing a final contract. The article couldn't get comments from EarthLink or the city, and speculates that Sacca's statements are a negotiation tactic. The article also notes that contact progress is posted.
Sacca contrasts the Mountain View process (2 1/2 months) with the several months so far without the end in sight. He should have studied Philadelphia, where EarthLink was awarded the bid in Oct. 2005, had a contract finished in early 2006, and didn't receive city council approval and then signed contracts until about May. The summer involved permitting and other work, and the pilot network is only now under construction.
Also, Mountain View was getting a big, fat, free gift. EarthLink will charge for access at a higher rate in SF, while Google will offer lower speeds for free.