Author Archives: Google Fiber

Speed on Business-Trimming with Speed

Our small business blog series Speed on Business relaunches featuring Thomas Powell, owner of Tru Skills Barber Shop, a barber shop/ clothing store (SnSlivelife) in Atlanta, who also owns a convenience store called The Village Bodega. He shared with us how access to fast reliable internet has improved service and impacted customer satisfaction in both of his businesses and helped him build on that success.

At Tru Skills Barber Shop, we pride ourselves in putting smiles on every customer that walks through our doors. I opened the shop in 2017, inspired by the understanding and ideology that everyone should look and also feel the effects of a good haircut in a safe and professional environment.

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We are located in the Buckhead Optimist Lofts in downtown Atlanta- ready to serve customers with the best hair cuts, hairstyles and our urban motivational wear clothing and accessories. 

Our experienced professional barbers/ stylist engage in detailed discussions to understand your hair goals, preferences, and the look you’re aiming for. Then using a combination of skills, top tier products and styling tools create amazing haircuts and hairstyles. Our customers always feel valued and satisfied as their hair is transformed into an art form- at the end of the appointment. 
   

Barber shops historically serve a unique social function for community gathering, conversations and camaraderie in the black community. We showcase and sell our SnSLivelife urban wear products at the shop and host events such as podcast interviews to discuss important topics that benefit the community. The motivational clothing brand was initially curated in 2003 to promote the importance of taking struggles and creating a strong powerful life. The two businesses go hand in hand- creating a one stop shop to look and feel good.


An important factor to achieving all this, is having reliable internet. I switched over to Google Fiber four years ago, as soon service was available in my area- and I have been with them ever since. Prior to switching over to GFiber, I experienced issues with download speed and Wi-Fi latency with the internet service I previously had in the shop.

Now, with GFiber internet, booking appointments has been seamless. Customers can easily schedule their preferred time slots with no delay. Credit card transactions are processed swiftly, making the payment process smoother and more efficient. We often have several customers come in for appointments at the same time, and they can all enjoy uninterrupted streaming of their favorite shows or music on their devices or on our tv monitors during their appointments. 



Having reliable and fast internet has been a game-changer for us. The speed and reliability we’ve experienced have not only enhanced our operational efficiency but have also elevated the overall customer experience. Customers give us great reviews for having a premium grooming and shopping experience from start to finish, and our internet is an integral part of that experience.

So come on out and visit us anytime you are in the Atlanta metro area. In fact, if you bring this blog, you can get 10 percent off our products and services this month.

Posted by, Thomas Powell, Owner & Designer at Tru Skills Barber Shop/ SnS Live Life Clothing



Get ready, Nashville: 5 Gig & 8 Gig are here

The internet in Music City is about to get even faster — 5 and 8 Gig speeds are now available to eligible customers in Nashville. 
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Residential customers can now sign up for GFiber’s 5 Gig plan for $125/month or the 8 Gig plan for $150/month. 

The new 5 Gig and 8 Gig internet plans both offer symmetrical upload and download speeds. All 5 Gig and 8 Gig customers will also get the new GFiber Wi-Fi 6 Router (which allows for up to 800 Mbps over Wi-Fi) and up to two Mesh Extenders for strong Wi-Fi coverage in their home. And just like with our other products, these multi-gig products include unlimited data, professional installation, and access to GFiber’s highly rated 24/7 customer service.   


Nashville is ready for faster internet

Nashville's strong economy has allowed for major growth over the past decade. Recognized as one of the fastest-growing metropolitan cities in the United States, the vibrant culture, thriving economy, and affordable cost of living has brought thousands of new residents into the city. 

It’s time for faster internet in Nashville. In his recent State of the State address, Governor Bill Lee said that Tenneseans are “ready for the future” and that the state will be focused on opportunity, security, and freedom for residents. 

Google Fiber is so excited to be a part of that future. We’re actively upgrading our fiber network — not just for opportunities today, but also for those that are still coming. With 5 and 8 Gig internet speeds, our Nashville customers can now stream video on multiple devices, enjoy reduced latency for videos and gaming, and seamlessly upload and download large files.

Want to learn more about GFiber? You can find more information or check for service availability in your area here

Posted by Nick Saporito, Head of Product


GFiber coming to Missouri’s Capital

Google Fiber has deep roots in the Show Me State — we expanded across the border from Kansas City, Kansas, over a decade ago and currently serve many municipalities on both sides of the border. And we’re deepening our Missouri roots even further. Last night, the City of Jefferson City Council approved a right-of-way license agreement, allowing GFiber to begin construction of a fiber optic network in the city.

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Jeff City has been laser focused on giving their residents more choice when it comes to fast, reliable internet, and GFiber is very excited to be a part of their vision for a connected future.

The first step in this process is engineering and permitting, and we’ll be getting to work on both of these tasks immediately. We plan to begin construction later this year, with the intention of connecting our first customers in Missouri’s capital city in 2025. 


Jefferson City is GFiber’s first city in Central Missouri, and we plan to hire a small dedicated team to help serve our customers here. If you want to stay up to date on our progress and product availability, sign up here.

Posted by Rachel Merlo, Head of Government & Community Affairs, Central Region



Speaking out for Digital Inclusion at Net Inclusion Conference 2024


Access to high-speed internet is a necessity, yet not everyone has equal access to the digital world. This week, over 1300 energized and engaged practitioners, policy makers, academics and activists came together at the National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA)’s annual Net Inclusion Conference in Philadelphia, PA. The conference brings together experts from the broadband and technology industry, along with national, state, and local digital equity leaders to share ideas, best practices and to champion the fight for digital inclusion. 

GFiber has been an active participant in this conference since early days. NDIA supports community programs and engages with policymakers on key issues around digital equity, which mirrors our efforts in each of the cities we serve.

GFiber’s Policy and Government and Community Affairs teams, represented by Ariane Schaffer (NY), Ryun Jackson (TN), John-Michael Cortez (TX), were on site in Philly, taking part in the broader conversation on the many issues that influence digital equity in our country. Additionally, Ariane shared her expertise on a panel centered around protecting broadband consumers with a strong focus on ensuring customers can understand what their internet service includes. It’s a top priority for us, which is why we launched Consumer Broadband Nutrition Labels even before the FCC’s deadline. 

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The growth in attendance of the conference was very visible this year. A diverse number of people were in-house from across all 50 states and several US territories. This diversity was also reflected in the jammed packed conference sessions, where various interesting discussions took place- such as one led by National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD ), which brought to the forefront the aspect of digital equity and inclusion and what that looks like for the developmental disabilities community.



But the most pressing topic of conversation in Philadelphia (and for those of us working towards digital equity across the country) is the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which is due to run out of funding in April this year.  

ACP is the largest internet affordability program in our nation’s history and is already helping over 23 million households across the country save up to $30 each per month on their monthly internet bills, and up to $75 for tribal households. It has been highly successful in helping families afford the internet they need to get and stay online, allowing them to connect to key opportunities in education, employment, healthcare and community empowerment. You can help protect this vital program. Email or call your representatives in Congress to ask them to please provide more funding for the ACP program by supporting the Affordable Connectivity Program Extension Act of 2024. You can visit USA.gov/elected-officials to find your representatives in Congress.

The Net Inclusion Conference underscored the importance of internet access, adoption, education and application; key elements of digital inclusion. Digital equity remains a persistent challenge, and it will take a cross-sector approach to solve it. We will continue to collaborate and build partnerships with the government and various organizations- supporting the work for digital equality and a better connected world.

Posted By, 
Ariane Schaffer, Public Policy & Government Affairs Manager
Ryun Jackson, Regional Government & Community Affairs Manager 
John-Michael Cortez, Regional Government & Community Affairs Manager



Nevada is on the board

Google Fiber is coming to Nevada! Earlier today, the Clark County Commission approved a franchise agreement with GFiber, which will allow us to bring fast, reliable internet to our first community in the Silver State.



With this announcement, we have active projects underway in all five of the states we set our sights on back in August 2022. Clark County covers much of the Las Vegas metro area, and is just the first of GFiber’s projects in the area. We’re already working on engineering planning in Clark County, and construction will get underway towards the end of this year with the goal of serving our first customers by mid-2025.

If you are in the Las Vegas metro area and want to keep up with what’s happening in Clark County and beyond, you can sign up here for updates on construction and service availability. We’re betting big in Nevada.

Posted by Ashley Church, West Region General Manager

KC Digital Drive – Digital Dignity and More Choices for Underserved Residents in Kansas City


Google Fiber partners with organizations working to make digital equity a reality in the communities we serve. KC Digital Drive was mobilized to combat the digital divide for underserved residents in Kansas City. Brynna Darley of KC Digital Drive shares the organization’s work towards the region’s digital transformation with an emphasis on digital choice and dignity, as well as support broadband connectivity and digital inclusion.


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KC Digital Drive is an organization that focuses on civic engagement in digital inclusion and emerging technology. To do so, we offer several programs to help combat the digital divide in the bi-state Kansas City region. We leverage the talents and resources available to us in the surrounding community. Notably, the last two years of our collaboration with Google Fiber found us on the receiving end of 400 Chromecasts.



Wanting to make the best of this opportunity, Peter Smith, an AmeriCorps Vista member working with KC Digital Drive, got creative and developed a new educational workshop that illustrated the power of switching from cable TV to streaming services (like added flexibility and more money in your pocket each month). He developed a curriculum and connected with partner organizations to assess the demand for this new Cut the Cord (CTC) Workshop



Each one-hour session focuses on: 


  • Setting up and using Chromecast 

  • Navigating the streaming landscape of free and paid services 

  • Finding reliable home internet at speeds suitable for their streaming needs


Since introducing this curriculum in April of 2023, we’ve distributed more than 325 Chromecasts donated by GFiber, across 19 events with nine different partner organizations, including Phoenix Family, The Black Family Technology Awareness Association, and Jewish Family Services.


In October of last year, we integrated the workshops into our class schedule at the Digital Services and Support Center at the LAMP campus — a digital commons for training and support in Kansas City historic east side that serves low-income neighborhoods and residents.

One workshop attendee, Rodolfo ‘Rudy’ Mesa, is a perfect example of how transformative one device can be. Mesa is 82 years old, living in Kansas City but originally from Wyoming. 


“Living on a fixed income, cable is a cost just like anything else, like a cellphone,” he said. He learned about our Cut the Cord workshops through outreach from our Digital Skills Trainer, Carol Meyers. 


Mesa shared that being a nerdy type of guy, access to streaming content and entertainment with his new Chromecast allows him to explore interests of history, nature, civilization, different animals and people, and the planet and science. 


We have been so pleased to see the demand for these workshops grow as our partners and community engage with options that boost equity and understanding of the technology and digital skills that fuel such a big part of daily life. We know that cable subscriptions can be expensive, and we are delighted to see these free devices help hundreds of households save money each month. 


To learn more about Cut the Cord workshop and the digital inclusion ecosystem in Kansas City, subscribe to our Kansas City Regional Digital Inclusion Newsletter and visit us online at kcdigitaldrive.org



Posted by Brynna Darley, State Digital Inclusion Coordinator








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CES 2024: Wi-Fi 7 and the future of connectivity

The dust is settling from the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, but one thing is clear: the dawn of Wi-Fi 7 is here. The Wi-Fi Alliance officially certified the Wi-Fi 7 standards on January 8th, marking a pivotal moment in the journey toward bringing this faster, more reliable wireless technology to market. Most of our lives depend on Wi-Fi every day — the technology allows our home devices to connect with the internet, giving us access to information, entertainment, education and so much more. That is why the advancement in Wi-Fi technology is important, for it impacts our connectivity experience.

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This news of the next generation of Wi-Fi definitely made waves at CES 2024. The event buzzed with announcements of lots of new devices that support Wi-Fi 7 — from smartphones, to smart home devices, to more innovative devices — the industry has begun gearing up to embrace the power of Wi-Fi 7. Google Fiber is no exception — we’re excited about the Wi-Fi Alliance’s certification of Wi-Fi 7 because it opens the door to even more multi-gig speeds and reduced latency over Wi-Fi networks.


The biggest innovation with Wi-Fi 7 is Multi-Link Operation (MLO), which allows packets to be sent over multiple frequencies simultaneously. Prior generations of Wi-Fi only used one frequency band at a time.This means that one device which supports Wi-Fi 7 can talk to an access point over multiple radios and frequency bands at the same time.

Wi-Fi 7 devices can select from either a 2.4, 5, or 6 GHz band and are able to choose the Wi-Fi band that offers the most efficient and reliable path to the router. The result is lower latency and improved reliability, resulting in a better experience for internet users.

We know that great wireless internet is key to our customers’ in-home experience, so we spend a lot of time working on making it better (even when it’s already good). In 2023, we deployed Wi-Fi 6E routers with tri-band connectivity, built to handle more devices with fewer slowdowns.

Our focus and commitment to delivering speed to the home and in the home is exactly why we’re including a Wi-Fi 7 router for GFiber Labs 20 Gig customers. Wi-Fi 7 is a longer-term solution, if you’re thinking about purchasing a new smartphone, TV, tablet, computer, or other devices in 2024, you may want to consider whether they are Wi-Fi 7 compatible. You can have the latest high-powered router but the compatibility of your Wi-Fi devices also impacts your online experience. Our device guide can help determine Wi-Fi compatibility for your devices.

CES exhibitors unveiled cool new devices and products that support Wi-Fi 7 and are coming soon. Dell introduced two new laptops — the Dell XPS 16 laptop and the Dell Alienware M15 R2 gaming laptop, which are expected to be released in Q1 '24. Samsung announced its Galaxy S24 Ultra smartphone, and Acer announced a new gaming router; the Wi-Fi 7 Predator Connect X7 5G CPE, which offers dual connectivity (an ethernet network and 5G service).

Wi-Fi Alliance’s certification of Wi-Fi 7 ushers in a host of new possibilities, and GFiber is committed to making sure that our customers can harness the speed of their internet. Expect more from us soon to help make your in-home internet even faster.

Posted by Ishan Patel, Product Manager



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MLK Day and the pursuit of equitable internet access

As Martin Luther King Jr. Day approaches, we are reminded of the ongoing pursuit for equity, justice, and the civil rights leader’s legacy and vision of a world with equal access to opportunities. Google Fiber aspires to be a part of this dream, by helping to bridge the digital divide and foster inclusivity in our increasingly connected world. 


Everyone deserves fast, reliable internet at an accessible price, and the ability to put that internet connection to use - to connect to opportunity. We’re grateful to work with many organizations across the country that put that principle to work every day, helping their clients and constituents get more out of their lives, both online and beyond.  


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Here are a few ways our incredible community partners are marking this important day across the country:





GFiber is proud to be a small part of these efforts, and others, working towards a more equitable and just world.


Of course, there is still more work to be done. We will continue to push forward to make the internet more accessible and to help others harness the power and opportunity of the internet. You can help too! One small way to act right now  — the Affordable Connectivity Program helps make high speed internet available to millions of US households through a $30 a month subsidy, but this program will end in April 2024 unless Congress acts to allocate additional funding. There is a bill before Congress to extend funding for this critical program. Take a moment to let your Congresspeople add your voice on the Affordable Connectivity Program Extension Act of 2024 to keep that connection strong for everyone.


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Posted by Jess George, Head of Digital Equity & Community Impact 



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Posted by Sunny Gettinger, Head of External Communications


Caritas of Austin: Alleviating Homelessness and Creating a Connected Community


In each of our cities, Google Fiber works with incredible community partners and organizations on digital inclusion and equity issues. In Texas, we’re working with Caritas of Austin to help bring fast, reliable internet to the residents of Espero at Rutland, an affordable and supportive housing community and our newest Gigabit Community. GFiber is providing access to high speed internet and digital literacy classes at no cost to residents. In today’s guest post, Rachel Hanover, Deputy Director of Espero Rutland Housing Services shares what this represents for this community.

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At Caritas of Austin, we believe all people deserve to have their basic needs met and a stable place to call home. We use a multi-layered approach to make homelessness rare, brief and nonrecurring in Central Texas by helping the unhoused population attain proper housing, employment, education, food and a supportive community.

As technology advances and society transitions to “paperless,” an internet connection is vital for finding permanent housing, applying for jobs and accessing other supplemental benefits like unemployment, food assistance  and health insurance. But for tens of millions of Americans, a high-speed internet connection is a luxury they can’t afford. This barrier makes life considerably more challenging to navigate, which is especially true for people experiencing homelessness.

Espero Rutland


In a joint venture to help unhoused individuals find permanent housing, we partnered with The Vecino Group and Austin Housing Finance Corporation to develop Espero Rutland, an affordable and intensely supportive housing community that is scheduled to open early next year.


Espero Rutland consists of 171 studio apartments and features many amenities, including an indoor community room, business center, gym and yoga studio, community dining room, and an outdoor courtyard area with lawn games, gazebo, BBQ stations and community garden. 



















We employ onsite case managers who work closely with residents to curate a personalized plan to help them manage personal finances, develop vocational skills and apply for supplemental benefit programs. To offer these services, it is imperative that residents have a stable internet connection. 

Creating a connected community with Google Fiber



Caritas of Austin is excited to partner with Google Fiber to provide access to a free, high-speed internet connection to every residential unit and property amenity at Espero Rutland. This partnership, which is part of GFiber’s Gigabit Communities program, will support broadband internet free of charge to very low income households. 

In addition to providing internet services at no cost to residents of Caritas Espero Rutland, GFiber will help to provide laptops and digital literacy classes to our residents. The virtual and onsite classes will help residents learn how to use their new laptops to access job applications, healthcare and supplemental benefits. 














At Caritas of Austin, we are committed to ending homelessness by creating a connected, supported community. Homelessness is a complex issue with no “one size fits all” solution. Through partnerships with local organizations like GFiber, we can help our clients build a solid foundation for their future. 

Empowering those experiencing homelessness,transforms individual lives, which contributes to the overall well-being of society–building a stronger, more connected community for everyone. 
Posted by Rachel Hanover, Deputy Director of Espero Rutland Housing Services