Just as Google’s new gigabit internet service starts to heat up in Kansas City, last night a new report from The Wall Street Journal claimed Google is currently in talks with satellite TV company Dish Network for a new wireless service. According to the report, which cited “people familiar with the discussions,” Google is just one of many companies Dish is negotiating with in order to potentially roll out a wireless network that rivals AT&T and Verizon.
By gaining some control of wireless spectrum, Google could push to increase Web traffic speeds on mobile devices. Google also could ensure the availability of new services such as Google Wallet, a mobile payments system that currently is blocked by AT&T and Verizon.
However, the report did warn that talks are not advanced and could “amount to nothing”:
Google is just one of several companies that Dish has held talks with recently, and the discussions with other potential partners are also at an exploratory stage, said the people familiar with the discussions. It is unclear which other companies are discussing a potential partnership with Dish.
Dish has said repeatedly over the past year that it wants a partner in building out a wireless network with the wireless spectrum—the airwaves that can be used to provide mobile phone and Internet services—it has acquired since 2008.
In an interview Thursday, Dish Chairman Charlie Ergen declined to comment on Google specifically, but said some of the potential partners he has considered include companies “who would like to be in the industry” and currently don’t have a wireless business.