Project Fi: Google’s New ‘Intelligent’ Wireless Service



Project Fi introduced on April 22, 2015

Google (GOOG) (GOOGL) recently launched a new wireless service called Project Fi. The service uses the wireless networks of carriers as well as Wi-Fi hotspots for connectivity. In a blog post published the same day, Nick Fox, the head of the project and Google’s vice-president of Communications Products, wrote, “As mobile devices continually improve how you connect to people and information, it’s important that wireless connectivity and communication keep pace and be fast everywhere, easy to use, and accessible to everyone.”

“That’s why today we’re introducing Project Fi, a program to explore this opportunity by introducing new ideas through a fast and easy wireless experience.”

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The fastest available connection at any given location at any particular time

Project Fi uses the networks of two national wireless carriers—Sprint (S) and T-Mobile (TMUS). According to the company, it also uses open Wi-Fi hotspots—quality checked by Google. The most attractive feature of Project Fi is that, at a given time and location, its subscribers get to use whichever of these three possibilities is fastest.

If a Wi-Fi hotspot and both carrier networks are available at a given location, the intelligent service, on its own, switches between the fastest of the options. Depending on the speeds available, the service even chooses between the two carrier networks. The fastest available carrier network is used.

Compatible phone for Project Fi: Nexus 6

According to the company, the Project Fi service can currently only be used on one smartphone—Nexus 6. The smartphone is compatible with the service’s SIM card. For calling and texting, Project Fi customers can use multiple devices with Google Hangouts.

Project Fi is currently available through the invitation-only Early Access Program. Interested individuals have to request an invitation to join this service. The service may not be offered on other smartphones for the duration of the program.

You can get diversified exposure to Google by investing in the Sector SPDR Trust SBI Interest (XLK). GOOG and GOOGL each make up ~3.9% each of this ETF. You can get more diversified exposure to Google by investing in the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY). GOOG and GOOGL make up ~1.7% of this ETF.


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