Google Fiber capturing a third of Kansas homes

google-broadbandGoogle Fiber has been sold to roughly a third of homes in the few neighbourhoods where it’s offered in Kansas City, US.

Bernstein Research surveyed about 200 homes in the narrow areas where the high-speed Internet and TV service is offered, or where it soon will be. It found that of the third subscribing to Google Fiber, an estimated 10 to 15 per cent took the “free” service — relatively slow broadband provided for seven years after a $300 installation charge. The others took higher-end packages.

Bernstein analyst Carlos Kirjner wrote that Google Fiber is largely seen by Kansas Citians as an attractive alternative to packages sold by cable and telephone companies for Internet and TV subscriptions, even though the newcomer doesn’t offer landline phone service. Roughly half of homes hav dumped their landlines, the analysis estimated, and consumers no longer see it as a critical service.

Kirjner also wrote that while incumbent competitors such as Time Warner Cable have been increasing their Internet speeds, Google is less likely than other “overbuilders” — companies who wire neighbourhoods already served by another company — to fail in the market. It said the new service’s staying power comes from Google’s vast resources, which give it ability to withstand a price war.

Of those residents offered the service, 77 per cent were considering a switch to Google Fiber and 60 per cent were highly likely to do so, according to the Bernstein survey.

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