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Google Fiber is restructuring and taking a new direction

Fiber is reportedly pursuing wireless broadband technologies.
Mariella Moon, @mariella_moon
February 16, 2017
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Julie Denesha/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Alphabet is making some huge changes to steer Google Fiber in a new, more wireless direction. According to Wired, the corporation has reassigned hundreds of Fiber employees to other parts of the company and those who remained will mostly work in the field. It has also hired broadband veteran Greg McCray as the new CEO for Access, the division that runs Google Fiber. These changes don't exactly come out of left field: back in October, Google announced that it's pausing the high-speed internet's expansion to new markets and that it's firing nine percent of the service's staff.

Wired says running fiber optic cables into people's homes has become too expensive for the company. A Recode report last year says it costs Mountain View $1 billion to bring Fiber to a new market. The service is also often named as Google's most expensive venture. That's why the company instructed former Fiber CEO Craig Barratt to find a way to lower costs and cut off half of his 500 employees.

Under the new CEO, Fiber might make use of Webpass, a company that Access bought last year. Webpass beams high-speed broadband through networks of small antennas. Access even petitioned the FTC to open up more of the wireless spectrum Webpass uses. Fiber could also use an internet technology Webpass tested that can follow you wherever you go and guarantee a certain amount of bandwidth.

Despite these changes, you won't have anything to worry about if you already have Fiber: you get to keep your high-speed internet. You can also still sign up for a connection if the service is available in your location, and Fiber will continue its rollout in Nashville, Louisville and San Antonio.

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