It has been almost a decade since Google launched its Fiber TV service and far longer since it debuted its Google Fiber Internet. Just as it has been shedding old services, features, and devices for the latter, Google is now moving to “upgrade” its Fiber TV experience. That upgrade, however, won’t come without some disruption, but, as always, Google is pushing it as something good. In exchange for the old Fiber TV box and expensive fee, you’ll get a free Google Wifi, a free Chromecast with Google TV, and the choice to pay for services on your own.
Google hasn’t been paying much attention to Fiber TV in the past years, so it’s really no surprise it’s practically doing away with the things that made Fiber TV what it is. When you take this upgrade offer, you will be giving up whatever Fiber TV box you have in your home. In exchange, you will get a Chromecast with Google TV for each and every one of those.
Google will also be replacing your router with a Google Wifi mesh, though it doesn’t say if you can use your own mesh router if you have a better one. Either way, it’s changing the way Fiber TV works, not just with the devices but also in how subscribers access content as well.
Fiber TV subscribers who upgrade will no longer have to pay the rather hefty $150 per month fee, but they will also have to subscribe to Live TV services independently. Google is pushing the likes of YouTube TV, FuboTV, Philo, and Sling as partners, each with its own subscription tiers and features. That also means that, unlike the old Fiber TV, you’re pretty much on your own when it comes to DVR functionality, relying on what these services offer, often for an additional price.
This Fiber TV upgrade program is the latest step in Google moving away from directly offering Live TV services. Chromecast with Google TV admittedly changes the game quite a lot in terms of what you can do compare to the Fiber TV box, including access to Stadia game streaming soon. However, it does also move away from the original concept behind Fiber TV and pretty much becomes Google Fiber with Google TV.