If you want to relocate to a tech-savvy city–a city that offers great prospects for technology talent–then you’ll love the seven cities listed below. Each of the 7 cities below have above-average brainpower (smart populations), great technology infrastructure, and a growing technology job sector.
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1. Seattle, WA – Forty seven percent of Seattle’s population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, making Seattle the “brain-iest” city in the U.S. Seattle is well-known for its technology infrastructure (wireless city), and growing tech industry. Microsoft and Nintendo are both located in Redmond, just outside of Seattle. Notable technology companies located within (or nearby) Seattle include Real Networks, Tmobile, Amazon, Clearwire, Infopop, Zillow.com, and Expedia.com. Just like San Jose and San Francisco, Seattle seems to attract many internet startups.
2. Austin, TX – Like Seattle, more than 40% of Austin’s population holds a bachelor’s degree. This is one of the highest percentages in the nation. Austin is the state capital and attracts talent from The University of Texas at Austin and Texas A& M University (Texas A&M is located in neighboring College Station). The weather is warm and sunny in Austin, and Texas has no state income tax. Notable technology/engineering companies headquartered in Austin include Dell Computers, National Instruments, and Austin Semiconductors.
3. San Francisco Bay Area, CA – San Francisco has always attracted people with intellectual and technology talent. Forty-five percent of San Francisco’s residents hold bachelor’s degrees, second only to Seattle, and The City by the Bay ranks third for its concentration of graduate and professional degrees. The infamous dot-com era began in San Francisco, and to this day, many internet and software companies are headquartered in the Bay Area. Notable companies include: BitTorrent, Craigslist, Blogspot, Digg, Google, Linden Lab (Second Life), Salesforce.com, Typepad, Technorati, Cnet, SBC Communications, and Sega.
4. Raleigh-Durham, NC – Raleigh-Durham, also known as “The Triangle,” attracts some the brightest minds due to its proximity to 3 major universities (Duke University, NC State, UNC-Chapel Hill), and Research Triangle Park–a well-known biotech, business and research center. 44% of Raleigh residents age 25 and older hold bachelor’s degrees. Notable companies in the Triangle area include: Cisco, IBM, Lenovo, SAS, Progress Energy, NetApp, and RBC Centura.
5. Atlanta, GA – Atlanta is rapidly becoming one of the fastest growing metropolitan cities in the Southeast and is a virtual hotbed for technology workers. Forty-two percent of Atlanta residents hold a bachelor’s degree or higher, and Atlanta is home to Georgia Tech and Georgia State. Notable companies headquartered in Atlanta include: AT&T, CNN, Cox Communications, Lucent Technologies, Data General, Hewlett-Packard, Earthlink, Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Lockheed Martin (in Marietta), Siemens, SunTrust Bank, Equifax, and Web.com.
6. Colorado Springs, CO – Colorado can be described as a small-scale Seattle–a rapidly growing technology center that is attracting highly educated workers. Colorado Springs is known for its aerospace research and military installations including the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD), Fort Peterson Air Force Base, and The U.S. Air Force Academy. This mountain city has the lowest percentage of high school dropouts. (It is one of just two places with a dropout rate below 10 percent.) Notable companies in Colorado Springs include: Hewlett-Packard and 17 other major electronics companies which combined employ over 10,000 people. Other companies with a presence in the city include Oracle, T. Rowe Price, Progressive Insurance, and Amtel.
7. Washington, D.C. – It’s no surprise that Washington D.C. has a strong technology industry since the city is home to the federal government, world-renown research institutes, lobbying firms, and one of the highest concentrations of law offices. More than one-fifth of D.C. residents have graduate or professional degrees, and notable companies in D.C. include: XM Satellite Radio, Carlyle Group, CSPAN, Lincoln Group, Allbritton Communications Company, and Blue State Digital.
Are these the only options for top technology cities? Boise is fast rising due to proximity to the west coast and very low cost of living. There are some other top technology cities and top “smart” cities Explore your options, and see which city is the right fit for you.