Google Fiber to cancel hundreds of Kansas City installations

William Gayde

TS Addict
Staff member

Google Fiber, Alphabet's gigabit internet service provider, has been informing hundreds of Kansas City residents that they won't be getting their ultra high speed internet service after all. Cancelling these installations is yet another setback for Fiber, which has had a very slow roll-out and recent financial issues.

Those affected will be receiving refunds on their deposit within the next few weeks. Customers in the Kansas City area who already have the service will be able to keep it going forward, too. The closures are likely due to poor financial numbers and Google biting off more than it can chew in this market.

Google is currently in 9 locations, of which Kansas City was the first back in 2012. In a statement to The Verge, a Google Fiber spokesperson did still reaffirm their commitment to the KC area with plans for expansion into several more communities. A Bloomberg report however outlines how many in Kansas City are disappointed in Google Fiber's effort to expand in the area and the lack of growth it promised to bring to the city.

Google Fiber has also been increasingly hesitant to take deposits for new service installations. They have instead been focusing on future wireless projects and wired projects they can complete in the next few quarters.

"Other Bets," the division of Alphabet that Google Fiber is in, had an operating loss of $3.6 billion last year. In an attempt to become profitable again, Alphabet stopped their drone delivery project, spun off its self-driving car technology to Waymo, and is continuing to scale back on Google Fiber.

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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
I'm betting they had the same problem there as they have had in Nashville. In Tennessee, the first utility to occupy a pole "owns" it and anyone wanting to add to it has to pay a fee for use. BUT the other occupants of that pole can list their objections and then the court fights begin. Google simply could not obtain enough right aways, fast enough and they pulled the plug. The state tried to create a state wide law, but ran into so many court battles they threw in the towel. Boy, talk about a time when the government should step in!
 

p51d007

TS Evangelist
I'm betting they had the same problem there as they have had in Nashville. In Tennessee, the first utility to occupy a pole "owns" it and anyone wanting to add to it has to pay a fee for use. BUT the other occupants of that pole can list their objections and then the court fights begin. Google simply could not obtain enough right aways, fast enough and they pulled the plug. The state tried to create a state wide law, but ran into so many court battles they threw in the towel. Boy, talk about a time when the government should step in!
Not to mention the corruption in KC, probably wanting a TON of under the table money to greenlight everything.
 
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Darth Shiv

TS Evangelist
Add another failed Google venture to the list.
It was always ludicrously ambitious. Let's look at this - they are installing fixed line infrastructure into an area that already has incumbent infrastructure and laying or accessing pipes for this stuff is stupidly difficult and/or expensive.

The main gain of Google doing this at all was really to give the incumbents a kick up the rear end and get them to upgrade their services via the threat of competition. It was always going to be a very expensive investment for Google.

This is exactly why Govt should not only be providing the infrastructure and wholesaling to 3rd parties but they should also be contractually obliged to their clientele (I.e. the general public) to not only maintain but upgrade that infrastructure. It is in the national interest as internet speed is crucial to modern education and the modern economy.

Having private entities dish out their own redundant solutions is extremely inefficient and needlessly expensive. The bad part about Govt run stuff is you are letting partisan politics get involved so I'm being a bit idealistic/engineering perfectionist.