Category Archives: Google Fiber

The latest news from the Google Fiber team

Building a business aimed at social justice with Google Fiber

At Google Fiber, we’re always excited to see how our customers put our gigabit internet to work for them. Throughout 2021 we’ll be featuring customers from across the country who represent the amazing endeavors of those who see the opportunity of the internet and are using it every day to make the world better, more interesting, kinder, and more just. 



 


“Why can’t we harness the marketplace to prompt thoughtfulness and push back the tide of social injustice in America?”

This is the problem I saw and my purposeful lifestyle company Civic Saint is a part of the solution. I designed my inaugural collection of accessories and apparel to uplift those advancing the Black Lives Matter, Equal Rights, and Voter Rights movements. Customers’ purchases also perpetuate the push for equity in America through donations to appropriate organizations. 

The idea for Civic Saint came to me while I was completing treatment for head and neck cancer at the University of Kansas Medical Center in January of 2020, but it all came to a head during this summer’s unrest. As a Black, gay man, I was tired of waiting for change to come; and it became clear to me that I was not alone.

My aspiration for Civic Saint is to not only create a company that promotes an affirming, inclusive society through thoughtful products and partnerships, but also one that prompts reflection and conversation about each of the movements our inaugural collection honors. Additionally, Civic Saint is a social enterprise that advances systemic change by donating a portion of its profits to organizations that fight for racial and social equity, including The Equal Justice Initiative, The Bail Project, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Troost Market Collective. Civic Saint’s mission and impact align with principles my late parents, Cecil and Goldie, instilled in me and demonstrated throughout their lifetimes as public servants and individuals. 

In creating my products, I’m also partnering with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color for my core services from Black, female-owned She Prints It in Atlanta, Georgia to Black, nonbinary Kansas City creative Fawn Lies to woman-owned AlphaGraphics as well as allies like Nick Ward-Bopp who co-founded Maker Village. The path to change includes being intentional in who you choose to do business with regardless of the size of your business — asking whether your choices reinforce economic disenfranchisement or uplift a multifaceted cadre of service providers and people.

From inception, Google Fiber and Google Business Solutions have underpinned the construction of my dream to start a business. From Google Fiber gigabit internet service to domain and email hosting to designing on my Google Pixelbook to payment processing, and so much more. Google’s suite of products and services have allowed me to establish a meaningful, professional company about which I can be proud and to do it quickly.

I believe right now has the potential to be as pivotal a time as the 1964 Freedom Summer, but only if we can drop the divides and remember our shared humanity and equal rights. In short, the call to do more to create a just, equitable society is upon all of us and we must answer it now.

To learn more about Civic Saint and shop our continually expanding collection, visit www.CivicSaint.com or follow us @CivicSaint on Instagram and Facebook.

Posted by Godfrey Riddle, Founder & President of Civic Saint





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author: Godfrey Riddle

title: Founder & President of Civic Saint

category: product_news

Building a business aimed at social justice with Google Fiber

At Google Fiber, we’re always excited to see how our customers put our gigabit internet to work for them. Throughout 2021 we’ll be featuring customers from across the country who represent the amazing endeavors of those who see the opportunity of the internet and are using it every day to make the world better, more interesting, kinder, and more just. 



 


“Why can’t we harness the marketplace to prompt thoughtfulness and push back the tide of social injustice in America?”

This is the problem I saw and my purposeful lifestyle company Civic Saint is a part of the solution. I designed my inaugural collection of accessories and apparel to uplift those advancing the Black Lives Matter, Equal Rights, and Voter Rights movements. Customers’ purchases also perpetuate the push for equity in America through donations to appropriate organizations. 

The idea for Civic Saint came to me while I was completing treatment for head and neck cancer at the University of Kansas Medical Center in January of 2020, but it all came to a head during this summer’s unrest. As a Black, gay man, I was tired of waiting for change to come; and it became clear to me that I was not alone.

My aspiration for Civic Saint is to not only create a company that promotes an affirming, inclusive society through thoughtful products and partnerships, but also one that prompts reflection and conversation about each of the movements our inaugural collection honors. Additionally, Civic Saint is a social enterprise that advances systemic change by donating a portion of its profits to organizations that fight for racial and social equity, including The Equal Justice Initiative, The Bail Project, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Troost Market Collective. Civic Saint’s mission and impact align with principles my late parents, Cecil and Goldie, instilled in me and demonstrated throughout their lifetimes as public servants and individuals. 

In creating my products, I’m also partnering with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color for my core services from Black, female-owned She Prints It in Atlanta, Georgia to Black, nonbinary Kansas City creative Fawn Lies to woman-owned AlphaGraphics as well as allies like Nick Ward-Bopp who co-founded Maker Village. The path to change includes being intentional in who you choose to do business with regardless of the size of your business — asking whether your choices reinforce economic disenfranchisement or uplift a multifaceted cadre of service providers and people.

From inception, Google Fiber and Google Business Solutions have underpinned the construction of my dream to start a business. From Google Fiber gigabit internet service to domain and email hosting to designing on my Google Pixelbook to payment processing, and so much more. Google’s suite of products and services have allowed me to establish a meaningful, professional company about which I can be proud and to do it quickly.

I believe right now has the potential to be as pivotal a time as the 1964 Freedom Summer, but only if we can drop the divides and remember our shared humanity and equal rights. In short, the call to do more to create a just, equitable society is upon all of us and we must answer it now.

To learn more about Civic Saint and shop our continually expanding collection, visit www.CivicSaint.com or follow us @CivicSaint on Instagram and Facebook.

Posted by Godfrey Riddle, Founder & President of Civic Saint





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author: Godfrey Riddle

title: Founder & President of Civic Saint

category: product_news

Centering on Customer Service

People need faster, more reliable internet, but they also need faster, reliable customer service. At Google Fiber, we see customer service as an integral part of what we offer when customers buy internet service from us. We listen to our customers and we respect your time — we know in a perfect world you’d never have to think about your internet, so we want to make sure that when you do have to reach out to us, the experience is as painless, and, perhaps even as pleasant, as possible.

Changing how customers engage with an internet company goes hand in hand with increasing speeds for us. From install appointments, rather than windows (with a 95% on time rate that we’re working to improve even more), to real people answering our phone lines to easy-to-understand bills, we’re focused on reducing friction for customers at every point in the process. Our agents pick up the phone fast (30 seconds or less is our goal — last week we were at  just over 10 seconds), with no scripts, rather than an endless stream of robots.  

Our automated processes also focus on making our customers’ lives easier. No one likes bills, but you should be able to understand what you are paying for with no mysterious fees or extra charges. And when things do go wrong, we try to help set it right, like by proactively crediting our customers if there’s an outage — you don’t even have to call to report it.

This was where we started, but we’re never satisfied with the status quo when it comes to our customers. We know we need to keep evolving and improving to ensure our customers always receive the best internet and customer service out there. We’re working to improve our customer experience on all fronts. When you need us, we’re making it easier for you to contact us; and when you’re comfortable troubleshooting for yourself, we’re making it easier for you to do it.

And we’re proud that our customers seem to appreciate these efforts. In 2020, our customers ranked us #1 in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) for internet providers in a number of categories, from Call Center Satisfaction to Ease of Understanding Billing, and also rated us tops in the Readers Choice Winner in 2020, stating “what Google Fiber offers is absolutely the very best an ISP can do.”

But we know we can do even better, so keep expecting more from us. The past few years have been a journey for Google Fiber. We’ve focused on what we are truly great at — providing great internet speeds at great prices while helping our customers find better TV options. We’re helping customers get started with video streaming services from multiple popular providers. And we’re launching in new cities in different ways.  But no matter what’s next for Google Fiber, our customers will be at the center of it.

Posted by Catherine Duncan, Head of Service as a Product




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author: Catherine Duncan

title: Head of Service as a Product 

category: product_news

categoryimage: true

Virtual learning with a little help from Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy and Google Fiber

Many students have been navigating virtual learning since last spring. Google Fiber has partnered with organizations and school districts in our cities to help make it easier for students and their families to connect and continue their learning journeys, whatever form that may take. Today, we’re excited to share a guest post from Malena Juarez, a senior at Lincoln College Preparatory Academy in Kansas City, Missouri, who attends the Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy Virtual Learning Program. The Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy is one of our Google Fiber Community Connections, which provides gigabit internet to the organization at no cost.




When I first came to the Academy, I was amazed by the sight of the facility and the huge softball field and baseball fields. It was a dream come true. To me, the Urban Youth Academy is a place of opportunity and growth. It has now become my second home. The UYA will forever have impacted my life positively, giving me a place to grow as a softball player and as a person in my community. The wonderful people I’ve met there have always been such great role models, who only wanted to see me succeed. 

I started playing softball when I was 10 years old, but had no idea what softball really was. But, as the years went by, softball then became my life. Moving to Lincoln Prep, I found out there was no team. It was always hard not being able to play the sport you love going into high school. During my junior year, the UYA helped tremendously by allowing our softball team to use their field and equipment to practice and play our games. I was finally able to play the game I love at the place I love. It meant so much to me and was very influential to me; I wanted to give back to my community just as the UYA did. 

Being a senior during this very interesting year of 2020 has been very difficult for me. As the oldest of three kids at home trying to manage everything being virtual, I felt very overwhelmed from making sure lunch was made at a certain time and homework was being done, to answering what felt was a million questions about school from my sisters and brothers. I always believed my senior year was going to be very stress-free, but with our current situation, it has been the exact opposite. 

Just as I was feeling it was all too much, I received a text message explaining what seemed to be a cool program —  the Virtual Learning Program at the UYA. The program currently has 50 high school students enrolled from 17 different schools in the KC area. It runs Monday-Friday, usually from 7 am-4 pm which allows us to complete our schoolwork and participate in baseball and softball workouts each day. 

At first, I thought it probably wouldn’t work out for me to attend, because where would my younger siblings go? That’s when I had a conversation with the Director of the Virtual Learning Program explaining the circumstances. Thankfully, they worked with me, and now my younger brother attends the program as well. So now, there is no worry about missing school to make lunch, and I’m only answering one question here and there! The only focus I have is school, and it is easier to do the best that I can. 

Coming to the UYA for the Virtual Program, Google Fiber’s high speed internet has been a tremendous help to me and my siblings. We are now able to go throughout the day with no problems with our connection. We can now focus on our school work.. It means a lot and has taken a great deal of stress off our shoulders. 

I just wanted to say a great big thank you to the Urban Youth Academy, the Virtual Program, and Google Fiber for being a great help to me. It has made such a huge impact on me and others. You have made me feel important and valued, and I could not thank you enough. 

Posted by Malena Juarez, Senior at Lincoln College Preparatory Academy 





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author: Malena Juarez

title: Senior at Lincoln College Prep

category:community_impact

categoryimage: true



Two speeds — fast and faster — which one’s right for you?



Back in August, Google Fiber announced our plan to test 2 Gig service in Huntsville and Nashville. Today, we’re excited to announce that 2 Gig is now widely available in those two cities.

New and existing Google Fiber customers in Huntsville and Nashville now have the choice between our proven 1 Gig for $70 a month — plenty of speed and capacity for everyone and their devices all at the same time — and our even faster 2 Gig for just $100 a month — ready for power users, the latest devices, and advanced smart homes that use lots of internet.

I’m especially excited to be able to share 2 Gig with our customers. Over the last few months, my family has been testing 2 Gig in our home. And what made 2 Gig right for us was how everything we could do with 1 Gig is now faster, wired and wireless, even when we’re doing a lot — which is pretty much all the time in our house. With 2 Gig, I’ve never worried about massive file downloads, even while I’m on a video call with my boss and my husband is on a Zoom call in the next room, and then, all of the sudden, our home music system asks for an update. I know we can easily handle it all at once.

My husband works in IT and he can set up new machines in minutes, with the progress bar on a new Mac saying, “this may take up to an hour” only to be wrapped up before he gets back from our kitchen with a cold soda. He’s saved the day with last minute file transfers that none of his coworkers could have done from home.

And it's not just for work. As an occasional gamer, I love that when I do get time to play, I’m not waiting for massive system updates to finish or worried about network lag, but just trying to hold my own competitively. Even my house gets in on 2 Gig. Our smart lights, Wi-Fi speakers, 4K TVs, sprinkler system, and Wi-Fi-connected pellet smoker are staying connected without competing with us or each other for bandwidth. And we’ve got the peace of mind that there won’t be any data caps to stop us from doing even more.

2 Gig comes with the Google Fiber Multi-Gig Router, which uses Wi-Fi 6, the latest Wi-Fi standard. While it’s true that right now, we only have a few devices that have Wi-Fi 6 capability, we’re making the most of the hefty Wi-Fi speed provided by the tri-band Mesh Extender. And we’re ready for whatever comes next. (Who knows? I think my dog might be jealous of the Wi-Fi feeder that spoils my daughter’s cat.)

1 Gig is great for my family, and 2 Gig just gives us more of what we love. So, whether your home needs 1 Gig fast for everyone or 2 Gig faster for a few more everyones, Google Fiber is happy to get the right internet for your household, at the right speed for you.

(And if you're not in Huntsville and Nashville, don't worry. You can still sign up to test 2 Gig and other products through our Trusted Tester program.)

Posted by Amanda Peterson, Product Marketing Manager




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author: Amanda Peterson

title: Product Marketing Manager

category: product_news

Art in the community and for the community in Charlotte

Charlotte-based muralist Rosalia Torres-Weiner believes art can sustain us during difficult times. As a self-titled “Artivist,”  Rosalia seeks to find creative ways to use art to bring people together, advance justice and equity, and inspire more good in the world.

In October, Rosalia created her response to COVID-19 called “Art Essentials,” which is part scavenger hunt, part public art project and part emergency relief. Rosalia created and hung 100 pieces of her original art in public places like bus stops, laundromats, apartment complexes throughout Charlotte’s Latinx neighborhoods. Folks who found the art discovered another surprise: a message on the back letting them know the painting also served as a voucher for a bag of essential items, including hand soap, hand sanitizer, face masks, and a $50 grocery card at local Compare Foods grocery store….and they get to keep the art!



After a few weeks, all of the art has been collected and 89 of the Art Essentials bags have been redeemed. The rest of the bags of supplies have been donated to the families at Charlotte Bilingual Preschool. Families who discovered the art were thrilled to get both an original painting and assistance with grocery basics at a time when inspiration and help are needed most.

Google Fiber is proud to support Art Essentials, along with a HUG micro-grant from Charlotte is Creative and support from Compare Foods. We continue to partner with local organizations focused on connecting our communities for good.

Posted by Jess George, Government & Community Affairs Manager, North Carolina






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author: Jess George


title: Government & Community Affairs Manager, North Carolina


category: community_impact

categoryimage: true

Stream on! You deserve better TV.

(((youtube)))


For a while now, we’ve been talking about the wonderful world of streaming. From live sports to obscure indie movies, there is a site and streaming service for everyone. Yes, even you!

At Google Fiber, we know that TV, both live and on demand, is going somewhere only the internet can go, so we’re focused on providing high speed internet that makes streaming easy and enjoyable. And all that choice usually comes with a lower price tag than traditional TV (including ours!). 

That’s why we continue to add streaming partners to make it even easier for Google Fiber customers to find your preferred TV content. Today, we’re excited to add SLING TV to that roster. The pioneer of live streaming TV, SLING TV has today’s most popular channels, available through a monthly subscription that starts at $30 per month, with the flexibility to personalize programming based on different genres.*

SLING TV joins YouTubeTV, fuboTV, and Philo in offering Google Fiber customers the best of live and on demand streaming content, at the right price for them.

Frankly, it’s been clear for a while now that the best TV is already online. 27% of households have cut the cord completely opting for streaming only, and 78% have a streaming service of some type. We know that finding the shows you want to watch can be tough sometimes, given the many streaming options available. Use thestreamable.com to find your favorite team or your local news live or a show or movie you love, and to compare your different options for watching.

And if you are a Google Fiber TV customer looking for more, we know you deserve better TV, and we’re here to help you get the upgraded experience that’s tailored to your needs.

Posted by Liz Hsu, Director of Product Strategy



* Subject to change, under SLING TV's terms & conditions.


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title: Stream on! You deserve better TV.

author: Liz Hsu, Director of Product Strategy

yturl: https://www.youtube.com/embed/j65eHQOdugg

category: product_news

categoryimage: true

A Conversation with OutYouth, our newest Austin Community Connection

(((video)))


I’m excited to announce that this fall, the Austin based LGBTQIA+ focused non-profit OutYouth became the latest Google Fiber Community Connection in Austin. As a queer, trans Texan who has been involved with OutYouth since 2015, I’ve heard countless stories from friends who found support when they needed it most through their programs. Most recently, I’ve personally seen how OutYouth’s Queer and Trans Commmunity Closet has made it possible for friends impacted by COVID-19 to get items they need.

Google Fiber’s Community Connections program brings free high speed Internet to libraries, community centers and nonprofit organizations in our Fiber cities. OutYouth is the 34th Community Connection in Austin to receive this high speed service.

Since 1990, OutYouth has provided programs, services, and partnerships which provide LGBTQ+ youth and their allies with opportunities to develop positive self-esteem, identify and cultivate peer support networks, and prepare for a successful adulthood.

As a community connection recipient, OutYouth’s Austin location - affectionately known as the little blue bungalow - will receive gigabit speed internet at no cost to help serve their mission and meet the needs of their clients.

Check out the video of my chat with Kathryn Gonzales, director of OutYouth, to learn more about how they’re connecting with the community during social distancing and how they hope to use their new Google Fiber Community Connection in the future.

Learn more from OutYouth here and get information on how you can support their GLITZ: 30th Anniversary Virtual Celebration, premiering on YouTube on November 7.

Posted by Danny Cleveland, Customer Service Program Manager (Austin, TX) & [email protected] ERG member



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title: A Conversation with OutYouth, our newest Austin Community Connection

author: Danny Cleveland, Customer Service Program Manager

category: community_impact

categoryimage: true

videourl: https://storage.googleapis.com/fiber/blog/OutYouth-Fiber-Blog.mp4

What’s happening in West Des Moines

In July, we announced plans to be the inaugural tenant on West Des Moines’s conduit network, which will allow us to deliver gigabit internet citywide. Since then, both the City and Google Fiber have been working to make this network a reality to ensure that residents can work, learn, play, stream, and connect online at super fast speeds. 


On October 1, the City of West Des Moines kicked off its  “Plant the Speed” campaign, aimed at getting every address in the city ready for high speed internet, whether people choose Google Fiber or another provider. Residents can sign up at www.wiredWDM.org right now to enroll their address for connection to the conduit network. This is a necessary first step to getting fiber service at your home. The website also includes information about the build schedule and what people can expect through the city’s construction process.







At Google Fiber, we’re enjoying getting to know West Des Moines. We’re assembling our local team and looking for office space. If you want to keep up with Google Fiber in West Des Moines, join our email list to get the latest news on our products, service, and availability. If you’re a West Des Moines resident, make sure your home is ready for speed by enrolling with the city and joining our list, too — both Google Fiber and the City of West Des Moines are moving quickly to connect you.


Posted by Rachel Merlo, Government & Community Affairs Manager



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author: Rachel Merlo, Government & Community Affairs Manager

title: What's happening in West Des Moines

category: city_news

Creating a space for Gente in the Google Fiber family.



In late August 2019, we began having conversations about forming a Latinx-centered Employee Resource Group (ERG) at Google Fiber. The United States had just witnessed a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, aimed directly at Hispanic Americans, and many of us wanted to create a safe space for employees to come together to discuss, reflect, and offer community to one another. 

Last year, Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month (September 15th - October 15th) presented an opportunity for our newly forming ERG to establish itself. We opened up a dialogue about immigration, the current state of the world, and the Latinx experience from the perspective of fellow Fiber Googlers with thoughtful programming and the occasional juntada (“get-together”). 

This year, the pandemic has made our work and community both closer and more crucial. So in May 2020, we officially — and virtually — introduced Gente as the ERG for Latinx employees and allies. With COVID-19 twice as deadly for Black and Latinx people, and in the wake of violence against Black and transgender communities, we’ve centered Gente’s efforts on not only the importance of coming together as a community, but in building strong intersectional alliances, too.

The word gente means “people," and also serves as a term for the deep-rooted connection that comes with community, family and a rich cultural history. Bringing this ERG to life within Google Fiber also means a new opportunity to give Latinx employees and allies a voice in critical business conversations around diversity, equity and inclusion — a voice that is representative of the diverse workforce and customers that make up our Google Fiber family. 

As a part of this year’s Latinx Heritage Month, we invited Dr. Gina Pérez, Cultural Anthropologist and Professor in the Department of Comparative American Studies at Oberlin College, to share her thoughts on the importance of this work. “To be Latinx is to be a part of a collective that has a history of resistance, resilience and a beautiful capacity to change,” she said. 

Gente and Google Fiber are celebrating that collective action, not just for this month, but every day. We look forward to seeing the growth that our group will encounter this year — and to the future opportunities we will have to serve our Latinx customers in all our cities.

Posted by Gabrielle Aguilar, Sales Training Specialist (Austin, TX) and Co-chair, Gente




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author: Gabrielle Aguilar

title: Sales Training Specialist (Austin, TX) and Co-chair, Gente

category: meet_the_fiber_team

backgroundsize: contain