Google Fiber Internet Review 2021

Google Fiber offers extraordinary speeds at competitive prices, if you live in the right place.
Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Price range:
$70.00/mo. or $700.00/yr.
Download speed:
1,000 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited

Google Fiber provides affordable, fast, and reliable internet that lives up to the hype. It’s consistently earned one of the top five spots in our analysis of internet speeds.

But the biggest problem is that it still hasn’t landed in many places across the country. So if you’re lucky enough to have Google Fiber internet in your city, is it worth the cost? Let’s dig in.

Pros

  • Fastest internet provider in the US3
  • Affordable
  • Month-to-month contracts

Cons

  • Limited availability

Find out if Google Fiber is available near you.

Google Fiber prices and plans

Google Fiber prices are excellent for the speeds you get.

Google Fiber has two types of plans: Fiber and Webpass. Fiber operates like most other internet service providers (ISPs): It hooks up individual residences to the internet.

Webpass is unique because it’s available only in certain apartment and office buildings located in Austin, Chicago, Denver, Miami, Nashville, Oakland, San Diego, San Francisco, and Seattle.

Google Fiber and Webpass plans
PlanPrice Download speedDetails
Fiber 1000$70.00/mo.*1,000 MbpsView Plan
Webpass$700.00/yr. or $70.00/mo.1,000 MbpsView Plan

Data effective 12/14/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Plus taxes and fees. Service not available in all areas.

As you can see, Google has a less-is-more philosophy when it comes to its plans.

If you’re in a Fiber service area, you get 1,000 Mbps, which is enough speed for a large family, home full of roommates, or even a small business.

The Webpass service is also pretty straightforward, though your price and download speeds depend on where you live. Some Webpass cities offer a $59.00 a month price if you pay for a year in advance—that equals out to a $700 payment up-front. And if you don’t have that much cash on hand, you can still opt for the $70.00 month-to-month payment plan.

Webpass speeds also depend on your building’s infrastructure. So you may get speeds slower than 1,000 Mbps—but Google plays fair by discounting your monthly cost if your building can’t support gig speeds. You’ll need to check your specific address to find out which payment plans and speeds are available to you.

Is Google Fiber internet cheap?

If you know you don’t need gigabit speeds, you may want to check out other ISPs with slower and cheaper internet plans, like Xfinity or CenturyLink.

Google Fiber price comparison
ProviderMonthly priceDownload speedsData capLearn more
Google Fiber$70*1000 MbpsUnlimitedView Plans
CenturyLink Internet$49$6515940 Mbps1 TBUnlimitedView Plans
Xfinity Internet$19.99$84.99151000 Mbps11.2 TBView Plans
Data effective 11/19/18. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Plus taxes and fees. Service not available in all areas.
New customers only. Rate requires paperless billing and excludes taxes. Additional fees apply.
For the first 12 months. Some packages require a 1- or 2-year contract.

But we should mention that Google’s Fiber 1000 plan is one of the cheaper gigabit-speed plan available in the United States, putting it alongside big names such as Verizon Fios Home Internet and AT&T Fiber.

Google Fiber gigabit speed price comparison
PlanPriceDownload speedData capDetails
Google Fiber 1000$70^1000 MbpsUnlimitedView Plans
Internet 1000$60/mo.°940 MbpsUnlimitedView Plan
Fios Gigabit Connection$79.99/mo.**Up to 940 MbpsNot AvailableView Plan
Data effective 11/19/18. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
^ Terms and Conditions: Plus taxes and fees. Service not available in all areas. If you live in an apartment or condo, Google Fibers ability to construct and provide Fiber is subject to the continued agreement between Google Fiber and the property owner. Upload/download speed and device streaming claims are based on maximum wired speeds. Actual Internet speeds are not guaranteed and may vary based on factors such as hardware and software limitations, latency, packet loss, etc
° for 12 mos, plus taxes & equip. fee. $10/mo equip. fee applies
** w/ Auto Pay + taxes

Where is Google Fiber and Google Webpass available?

You can get Google Fiber if you live in one of these major US cities or metro areas:

  • Huntsville, AL
  • Oakland, Orange County, San Diego, and San Francisco, CA
  • Denver, CO
  • Miami, FL
  • Chicago, IL
  • West Des Moines, IA
  • Kansas City, KS and MO
  • Charlotte and The Triangle, NC
  • Nashville, TN

Google Webpass is also available in a handful of these cities:

  • Oakland, San Diego, and San Francisco, CA
  • Denver, CO
  • Chicago, IL
  • Miami, FL
  • Nashville, TN
  • Austin, TX
  • Seattle, WA
A Reviews.org Editor's Choice award badge for January 2021

Google Fiber internet speed and data

Google Fiber earned the title of the fastest internet provider and our Editor’s Choice pick for speed.

Some have suggested that Google developed Fiber just to spur competition in the ISP market, raising speeds for all internet users.1 Higher user speeds means more revenue for Google (which owns Youtube and many other online services).

Well, if that was Google’s goal, then it worked. Ever since Google’s announcement in 2009, there’s been a sort of race to the top among ISPs to develop gigabit speed internet networks. No one wants to lag behind in an industry that’s based on speed.

But the question is, now that other companies have started catching up, how does Google Fiber compare?

Google Fiber download speeds and upload speeds
ProviderDownload speedsUpload speeds
Google Fiber1000 Mbps1000 Mbps

Just by looking at the numbers—1,000 Mbps—it’s clear that Fiber offers fast internet. But speed isn’t just about the numbers. If your ISP is unreliable or has a data cap, you could miss the new The Mandalorian episode no matter how many Mbps you’ve paid for.

Fortunately for Fiber customers, Google’s service runs on a brand-spankin’-new fiber-optic network that provides reliability, symmetrical upload/download speeds, and no data caps. Fiber-optic networks will almost always beat out older cable networks, no matter what the advertised speeds are.

Google Fiber internet speed score3
ProviderReviews.org weighted scoreOverall rank
Google Fiber75.6 out of 1001st out of 38 ISPs

Google Fiber earned the top weighted score in our latest analysis of the fastest ISPs in the US. It scored almost 10 points higher than the next fastest ISP, making it a no-brainer if you live in a city where Google Fiber is available.

Real quick: that weighted score isn’t a reflection of Google Fiber’s actual download speeds. Instead, it’s a combination of the average download speeds, upload speeds, and latency seen in more than 1 million speed tests from 2019.

Google Fiber contracts, equipment, and fees

Google doesn’t require a contract for Fiber or Webpass internet.

Contracts. Companies love ‘em, people hate ‘em.

Luckily, Google promises no contracts for both its Fiber and Webpass internet services. Now that’s what we love to hear.

Google Fiber service fees

Google Fiber claims to have no hidden fees—and, in fact, that seems to be the case. It even offers this nifty list of possible fees to help you avoid that rollercoaster ride of a surprise.

  • Service deposit: $10.00, but credited toward any other fees charged to your account.
  • Construction fee: $300.00, but not everyone pays this. The construction fee is waived if you purchase at least one year of service, and you can also opt to pay it in $25.00 increments.
  • Early termination fees: None. For real.

Google Fiber equipment and fees

Google’s got a long list of equipment you can rent or replace, including fiber jacks and mesh Wi-Fi extenders. And we’re going to award a few bonus points here for offering free fiber jacks (though you have to pay if you want more than one).

Here’s a quick look at how much some of the Google equipment costs if you need a replacement.

  • Fiber jack: $100.00 replacement fee
  • Network box: $200.00–$300.00 replacement fee
  • Google Fiber router: $280.00 replacement fee
  • Google Fiber mesh extender: $180.00 replacement fee

You can also get online with Webpass without renting any extra equipment. However, if you want Wi-Fi with Webpass, you’ll have to provide your own router. (We recommend this NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 router from Amazon.)

Google Fiber customer service

Google Fiber customer service is almost as helpful as a Google search.

Google Fiber has helped revolutionize the home-internet industry. However, it’s still a telecommunications company, and that means customer service complaints.

You can find plenty of horror stories online—mostly about installation and billing issues—from people who signed up for Google Fiber. But I challenge you to find a company that doesn’t have similar online complaints.

While Google Fiber certainly has its issues, a Consumer Reports survey suggests that customers are happier with Google than with pretty much any other ISP.3

You can also contact Google Fiber online here:

Our recommended Google Fiber plan

Google Fiber 1000

Who it’s best for: Gamers, home-businesses, large families

Why we picked it: Sure, it’s Google Fiber’s only plan, but if you want a fast internet plan, this is the cream of the crop, the pick of the litter, the whole kit and caboodle.

Not only is Fiber 1000 one of the country’s best gigabit internet plans, it also tends to be one of the most affordable. This plan could go toe-to-toe with any of the top gaming ISPs and probably win.

Google Fiber 1000
Google Fiber
Download speed:
1000 Mbps
Upload speed:
1000 Mbps
Data cap:
Unlimited
$70 a month

Data effective 12/14/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Terms and Conditions: Plus taxes and fees. Service not available in all areas. If you live in an apartment or condo, Google Fibers ability to construct and provide Fiber is subject to the continued agreement between Google Fiber and the property owner. Upload/download speed and device streaming claims are based on maximum wired speeds. Actual Internet speeds are not guaranteed and may vary based on factors such as hardware and software limitations, latency, packet loss, etc.

Recap: Is Google Fiber good?

Google Fiber is a simple, reliable, and truly fast internet service. But even with blazing fast internet speeds and a low-priced gigabit plan, Google Fiber still doesn’t serve most of the United States. Until the company can get better coverage in suburban and rural areas, it will never be a real leader in the ISP world.

But if you do live in the company’s service area and you want gigabit internet speeds, then Google’s affordable Fiber 1000 plan is nearly unbeatable.

Google Fiber prices, plans, and download speeds recap

Data effective 12/14/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Terms and Conditions: Plus taxes and fees. Service not available in all areas. If you live in an apartment or condo, Google Fibers ability to construct and provide Fiber is subject to the continued agreement between Google Fiber and the property owner. Upload/download speed and device streaming claims are based on maximum wired speeds. Actual Internet speeds are not guaranteed and may vary based on factors such as hardware and software limitations, latency, packet loss, etc.

Make sure Google Fiber is available in your area.

FAQ

Q: How does Google Webpass work?

Google’s sluggish pace in rolling out its internet service definitely ruffled a few feathers. Maybe that’s why Google bought a company called Webpass to extend its service footprint into major cities like Miami, Seattle, and Atlanta.

In these cities, Google Fiber uses Webpass’ network technology. Rather than running a cable into your house, Webpass has an extensive network of tower-to-tower wireless relays that connect nearby apartments and office buildings to a central hub.

This means Webpass is only available in equipped buildings, and your internet speed will depend entirely on your building’s infrastructure. It’s certainly not traditional internet, but it can be a screamin’ deal for gigabit speeds if you live in the right place.

Sources

  1. Blair Levin and Larry Downes, Harvard Business Review, “Why Google Fiber Is High-Speed Internet’s Most Successful Failure,” September 2018. Accessed September 2020.
  2. James K. Willcox, Consumer Reports, Inc., “People Still Don’t Like Their Cable Companies,” September 2018. Accessed September 2020.
  3. Catherine McNally, Reviews.org, “The Fastest Internet Providers 2020,” December 2020. Accessed December 2020.