Frontier's Wilderotter says Google Fiber is driving hype, customer confusion

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Frontier Communications took a jab at Google Fiber (NASDAQ: GOOG), which is considering rolling out its 1 Gbps fiber to the home (FTTH) in Portland, Ore., later this year, claiming that the Internet giant is trying to offer consumers what they don't need, reports The Oregonian.

Maggie Wilderotter Frontier CEO

Wilderotter

"Today it's about the hype, because Google has hyped the gig," said Maggie Wilderotter, CEO and chairwoman of Frontier, during a company board meeting in Portland this week.

Wilderotter said that Google is touting speeds that only a small minority of services could take advantage of while confusing customers. "We have to take the mystery and the technology out of the experience for the user because it's a bit disrespectful to speak a language our customers don't understand."

So how is Frontier, which already enjoys its own FTTH monopoly in Portland thanks to its acquisition of Verizon's (NYSE: VZ) FiOS service in 2010, going to battle Google Fiber's possible entry into the city?

The telco said that its answer will be to provide better prices for more "modest speeds." Wilderotter said that 10-12 Mbps will be enough bandwidth in the near-term. She added that the company is upgrading its rural markets to support those speeds over its existing copper network where it does not provide FTTH today.

Today, Frontier offers a 15 Mbps FiOS broadband speed tier for $30 a month.

That's not to say that Frontier is ruling out providing its own 1 Gbps FTTH service, however. Wilderotter said that the company will offer 1 Gbps speeds within "the next several quarters" when it sees services come on the market that can take advantage of those higher speeds.

For more:
- The Oregonian has this article

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