Google Fiber, the Alphabet division concentrating on offering high-speed internet access in the US, has ambitious goals to expand its fiber benefits in the next three to five years, the firm announced in a blog post.
It wants to launch fiber services in five new states, which include previously announced plans to enter Arizona and Colorado, as well as Nebraska, Nevada, and Idaho. In addition, Google Fiber hopes to boost to 22 metro areas from 17 today.
It’s a significant reversal from 2016, when the business reportedly spread off 9 percent of its workforce and halted plans to launch services in over half a dozen cities. In the following years, reports emerged that the company was canceling hundreds of installations in existing metro areas like Kansas City and left Louisville, Kentucky, entirely after an ill-fated experiment with laying fiber cabling in ultra-shallow trenches.
However, it seems the company is in a position to grow, with its CEO Dini Jain telling Reuters that the team is glad to “add a little bit more build velocity.” Its launch in West Des Moines, Iowa, in March, was its first new state in five years, and the following month it said it would be expanding to Des Moines. Google Fiber did more building in 2021 than in “the previous few years combined.”
Despite his hopes to regain momentum, Jain says Google Fiber’s ambitions are modest. “There was an impressive ten years ago that Google Fiber was trying to create the whole country,” he told Reuters. “What we are motioning here is, ‘No, we are not trying to create the entire country.'” As well as expanding into the new states, Jain’s blog post says the expansion will continue in existing metro areas.
Google Fiber dates back to 2010 and was initially launched to help drive the adoption of faster internet speeds at lower cost, partly by offering it directly and partly by pressuring incumbent US providers to compete. As a former Time Warner executive, Jain says he instantly felt the pressure from Google. “We were so paranoid,” he tells Reuters.
News of Google Fiber’s expansion plans comes at a time of belt-tightening at Google and across the tech industry more generally. Last month the company announced a two-week hiring freeze while it reviewed its headcount needs, making it the latest tech giant to take stock amidst a worsening economic climate.
Alphabet has also been more willing to shutter experimental projects in recent years. For example, it shut down its balloon internet service Loon last year and wound down its energy kite division in 2020.
“The intent is to build businesses that will be successful in and of their right, and that is what we are trying to do at Google Fiber,” Jain tells Reuters.
Google Fiber is the portion of the Access division of Alphabet Inc. It delivers fiber-to-the-premises service in the United States, supplying broadband Internet and IPTV to a small and slowly growing number of locations. In mid-2016, Google Fiber owned 68,715 television subscribers and was gauged to have about 453,000 broadband customers.
The service was first presented to the Kansas City metropolitan region, including twenty Kansas City area suburbs within the first three years. Initially proposed as an experimental project, Google Fiber was announced as a viable business model in December 2012. Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt stated, “It’s not an experiment; we’re running it as a business” at The New York Times’ DealBook Conference.
Google Fiber announced an expansion to Austin, Texas, and Provo, Utah, in April 2013, and subsequent additions in 2014 and 2015 to Atlanta, Charlotte, the Triangle, Nashville, Salt Lake City, and San Antonio.
In August 2015, Google revealed its intention to restructure the company, moving fewer central services and creations into a new umbrella corporation, Alphabet Inc. As an aspect of this restructuring plan, Google Fiber would become an associate of Alphabet and may become part of the Access and Energy business unit.
In October 2016, all expansion strategies were put on hold, and some assignments were cut. However, Google Fiber said it would continue to deliver service in the cities where it is already installed.’
In August 2022, Google Fiber declared it would expand into 22 metro areas in five states (Idaho, Nebraska, Arizona, Colorado, and Nevada), including formerly announced expansions into Arizona, Mesa, and Colorado Springs, Colorado, based on where it sensed speeds were lagging.
Google Fiber offers five alternatives, depending on location: a free Internet possibility, a 100 M bit/s choice, a 1 G bit/s Internet alternative, and an option including television assistance (in complement to the 1 Gbit/s Internet) and an opportunity for home phone.
The Gigabit Internet service incorporates one terabyte of Google Drive service, and the television service consists of a two-terabyte DVR in addition to the Google Drive. The DVR can register up to eight live television shows simultaneously. In addition, television services will stream live program scope on iPad and Android tablet computers.