Google Fiber Nears Expansion Announcements

Reportedly To Extend Service To Atlanta, Charlotte, Raleigh-Durham, and Nashville
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Google Fiber is expected to announce as early as today that it will expand the reach of its mix of 1-Gig and pay-TV services to another four markets – Atlanta; Charlotte; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and Nashville – according to a mix of local reports and The Wall Street Journal.

Google Fiber announced last February that it was exploring the idea of expanding into nine metro markets and up to 34 cities and originally expected to announce those selections by the end of 2014. Google Fiber hasn’t made any formal expansion announcements, but said in December that it had delayed revealing those decisions until early 2015. Google Fiber is hosting news conferences today in those respective markets, according to the WSJ and local reports.

Here’s the competitive situation in the markets that are reportedly to be part of this wave of Google Fiber’s expansion:

-Atlanta (Comcast and AT&T)

-Charlotte, N.C. (Time Warner Cable, AT&T)

-Nashville, Tenn. (Comcast, AT&T)

-Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (TWC, AT&T)

Google Fiber has deployments underway in three markets in Kansas City (served by TWC, AT&T and SureWest Communications); Provo, Utah (Comcast and CenturyLink); and, most recently, Austin, Texas (AT&T, TWC and Grande Communications).  

Google Fiber has been selling stand-alone 1-Gig broadband in those markets for $70 per month, and offering a “free” basic Internet service (5 Mbps down by 1 Mbps upstream) for customers who spring for the construction fee. In Austin, its Gigabit/TV bundle starts at $130 per month. In its initial service areas, Google Fiber has used a demand-driven model to determine which “fiberhoods” get connected at all and, if they meet the sign-up threshold, which ones get connected first.

So far, Google Fiber has not targeted markets served by Verizon FiOS.