Google is in the fiber internet business. Launched in 2010, Google Fiber has now made its way into several cities. In select areas, internet speeds up to 1 Gigabit (1000 Mbps) are available to homes and businesses. This means no more waiting for files to download, movies to stream, or delays to anything coming over the internet. It opens up doors for working from home, connecting to smart appliances, or binge-watching endless movies and sporting events.
What is Google Fiber?
Google Fiber provides high-speed broadband and cable television to its subscribers. It’s possible to add phone service as well. It uses fiber optic cables to deliver service to homes and businesses. It is available in urban areas with a lot of customers and where it’s easy and convenient to lay fiber. If you live out in the country, the chance of any fiber being built out to your area is very remote. It takes a lot of funds and manpower to dig trenches and lay miles of cables. That’s why Google Fiber is targeted to densely populated areas with a lot of potential customers.
What are Fiber Optics?
Fiber optic internet uses extremely small, flexible glass wires to carry coded signals using pulses of light. It allows the signal to travel very fast with great reliability. Fiber is the backbone of the internet. Cables are buried in the ground or laid on the bottom of the ocean and connect the whole world. Transmitting data through these glass fibers is much faster than via copper telephone wires and allows the data to travel great distances without breaking down.
Google Fiber uses a technology called Google Fiber Huts. The fiber comes to the huts underground, and then the cables travel along utility poles into neighborhoods and homes. At a residence, they stop at a Fiber Jack.
From the fiber jack, a fiber modem with Wi-Fi is hooked up inside your home. The modem must be capable of converting the light signals coming through the fiber to digital signals your computer can read. Google Fiber will provide the proper modem, Wi-Fi, and network controls with their Fiber 1000 or Fiber 100 Plan.
Where is Fiber Internet Available?
Google Fiber offers traditional fiber internet service in several cities, including Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Huntsville, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Louisville, Miami, Nashville, Oakland, Oklahoma City, Orange County, Phoenix, Portland, Provo, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Salt Lake City, Seattle, and Tampa. In other cities, it offers a last-mile wireless option called Webpass, which can be used to provide gigabit speeds wirelessly to multi-tenant buildings.
What are the Possibilities with Gigabit Internet?
Gigabit upload and download speeds allow you to experience applications in real-time, such as chatting with your friend in high-resolution video and feeling like you are right there.
You can use multiple devices at the same time – there’s plenty of bandwidth to go around. Gigabit speeds allow you to stream movies and music with waiting for the file to buffer. Multiplayer games do not experience lag, and movies are instantaneous. Gigabit Internet high speeds can also prepare you for the Internet of Things (IoT), including many smart devices and appliances that may soon appear on the market.
Google fiber offers a flat-rate plan with unlimited data and no contract required. There is no slowdown if you use a large amount of data, and there are no extra charges listed.
Depending on your location, Google Fiber offers different plans, from a free internet option to a 100 Mbps option to a 1 Gbps option. Television service and phone service are also available. The Gigabit service includes the Google Drive service, and the television includes DVR storage as well. The DVR not only record shows but allows you to stream live program content on your computer. Depending on your service, hardware includes a network box, a TV box, a remote, and an 8-tuner DVR.
Plans for Everyone
Google Fiber offers residential plans as well as plans for businesses and property managers. There are flat-rate plans up to 1 Gigabit speed.
They offer lower speeds as well for a lower cost. That means you may not always get that speed, but there is a possibility, and if it comes anywhere close to there, that’s a great improvement over DSL, Broadband, cable, or other options. Google Fiber has been known to offer free internet in some places, such as apartment complexes, to promote their product. Naturally, speeds may be faster when you pay for the service than on the free network.
Google Fiber is available in limited areas. In some cities, they have laid a lot of fiber, while only specific areas have access to the service in others. As mentioned, the cost and labor required to lay fiber in any particular area are immense. Google Fiber has dabbled with shallower trenches and other efficiencies with some success and some challenges, but it comes down to cost per mile, and fiber is expensive.
Great, Sign Me Up!
Visit the Google Fiber website to enter your address and see if service is available in your area. The areas of availability are limited, but if you are in an area they service, blazing fast internet speeds are a possibility. If anything, Google Fiber has made the public hungrier for faster services, and someone will fill the gap in your city.