While it may not exactly be "Déjà vu all over again"—to partially quote Yogi Berra—Google Fiber is gearing up for a 2 Gbps offering
In a Monday blog post, Google Fiber said it was teeing-up the new "2-Gig" tier for a trial run with select subscribers in Nashville, Tennessee and Huntsville, Alabama next month as part of its Trusted Tester program.
In 2010, Google shook up the telecommunications industry when it first announced its plan to deploy a fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) internet service with speeds of up to a 1 gigabit per second, which was 100 times faster than the average speeds of that era.
While at the time cable operators and other service providers downplayed the need for 1-gigabit services, Google Fiber jumpstarted a rush to deploy the faster speed to residential and business customers. Today, 1G speeds are a almost table stakes across Verizon, Comcast, Charter Communications and AT&T, and other ISPs.
At last year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, cable operators outlined their vision for delivering 10-gigabit data speeds, which includes the cable industry's DOCSIS 4.0 specifications. DOCSIS 4.0 was designed to hit downstream speeds of up to 10 Gbps, which is twice the download speed of DOCSIS 3.1, and an upstream of up to 6 Gbps (quadruple the DOCSIS 3.1 upstream speed.)
Google Fiber's 2-Gig service costs $100 per month, which is $30 more than its 1-Gig service. It comes with a new Wi-Fi router and Wi-Fi mesh extender.
Google Fiber's Amalia O’Sullivan, director of product management, said in Monday's blog that the 2-Gig service will also be trialed in other Google Fiber cities late this fall. The 2-G service will also take a trial run Google Fiber Webpass, which is available in nine U.S. cities.
"This year has made this need for more speed and bandwidth especially acute, as many of us are now living our entire lives — from work to school to play — within our homes, creating unprecedented demand for internet capacity," O’Sullivan said in her blog. "Google Fiber networks are designed so there’s plenty of capacity to allow our customers, with the right in-home hardware, to reach 2 Gig (and even faster) speeds. Our approach to network design allows us to keep our customers connected to the fastest speeds available."
After the 2-Gig service passes muster with Google's voluntary testers, it will be rolled across Google Fiber's Nashville and Huntsville networks later this year, with plans to launch the service across most of the Google Fiber and Google Fiber Webpass cities early next year.