According to new reports, Google has decided to drop its free basic internet option in some regions.
In Kansas City, the first region where Fiber launched back in 2011, Google has removed its free basic internet plan. This option offered 5 Mbps downloads and 1 Mbps uploads and only required a $300 construction fee that could be paid up-front or in monthly installments of $25. Over the weekend, Re/code reported the change for Kansas City. Now, Google Fiber starts at $50 a month for a symmetrical 100 Mbps service. The free offer was available as recently as Wednesday for the region. Newer Google Fiber regions, including Atlanta, already had the $50 per month entry plan. Google promised "up to seven years" of basic service with the free basic internet plans and will honor existing customer agreements. Google also said that it will accept new signups for the free plan until May 19, though the option is no longer available on its website. The free basic internet plan is still available in Austin and Provo, Texas, though it is unclear if Google plans to pull it at a later date.
Despite Google's quiet killing of the free option in Kansas City, replacing it with the new $50 "Fiber 100" service, the company will continue to offer free ultra-fast internet in some public housing complexes in the area. "More people should have access to fast Internet," said Google Fiber on its blog back in February. "This year, we're exploring new ways to make that happen. In addition to bringing free gigabit Internet to select public housing, we'll introduce a new affordable Internet option in some cities — a low-cost broadband connection that's fast enough to make video calls and stream HD content."
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