January 28, 2015
Google announced yesterday that it plans to deliver its Fiber Internet service with speeds of one gigabit per second (100 times faster than average U.S. broadband) to many of the neighborhoods in 18 cities of metro areas including Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; and Nashville, Tennessee. As with its initial three areas, the company will offer its one gigabit Internet service for $70 per month, while an Internet and TV package will cost $120-$130, depending on the location.
Google Fiber is currently available in Kansas City, Kansas; Austin, Texas; and Provo, Utah. The company is still considering the introduction of Fiber to Phoenix, Arizona; Portland, Oregon; Salt Lake City, Utah; San Antonio, Texas; and San Jose, California.
“Many investors and analysts consider Fiber an expensive experiment, or a ploy to encourage other broadband providers to upgrade their networks,” reports The Wall Street Journal. “However, Google executives say Fiber is a real business and the company is trying to build its service more efficiently.”
Google Fiber’s Dennis Kish said the company has experienced “robust demand” in the areas it provides the service, and they “are seeing a higher-than-expected take rate” on the offers.
Regarding the current debate over net neutrality, Kish suggested that the FCC’s proposals would not impact plans for Google Fiber expansion. However, a potential upside could be better access to utility poles and infrastructure owned by utilities.
“The government should continue to work to enable cities to provide access to poles,” he said. “The key to increase competition is to lower barriers to entry.”