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The pros and cons of using Google as your wireless carrier

The pros and cons of using Google as your wireless carrier
Courtesy of Google Fi

Google has a reputation of coming late to the game and then changing the game. It wasn't the first to do search, but it did it the best. It wasn't the first to do maps, but it did it the best. It wasn't the first to serve wireless data, voice and text, but it remains to be seen whether it's the best or no good at all.

With Google's Project Fi, your phone automatically connects via Wi-Fi or uses Sprint or T-Mobile's network - whichever of the three is fastest. Your phone bill is $20 for calls and texts and you pay $10 for each gig of data you use, and only the data you use. Pretty cool, right?

The advantage here is obvious, especially if you have Wi-Fi: You can predict how much your bill will be, and you get great cell service, particularly over Wi-Fi. But there are limitations.

The first and biggest limitation is it only works on Motorola's Nexus 6 phone. The Nexus 6 is the first smartphone that's compatible with the Project Fi SIM card needed so it can connect across multiple cellular networks, according to Google. The Nexus 6 will set you back $499, or you can finance it for 24 months.

Even if a Nexus 6 sounds good to you and you're eager to try Project Fi, you can't just sign up. You have to request an invite from Google for its Early Access Program, and once you ask, Google has to see if the service is available in your area. And unlike most carriers who want you to switch to them, Project Fi won't pay your termination fee to end your contract with your current carrier. So unless your contract is up, or you have month-to-month service, it'll be expensive to switch to Project Fi.

Google-as-carrier may be the future of wireless, but that future just hasn't arrived yet.

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Source: TheVerge
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