Google Fi



  • Has anyone used or looked into Google Fi?

    Hype or next best thing?



  • Hype I think. I have several reservations. One is that Google never got Google Voice working universally. Some people love it, some can't even get it. Second is that Google famously gets distracted by shiny objects. Google Fi might be their hot new thing, and it might be canceled tomorrow because they forgot about it. Third is that essentially Google Fi is just Google reselling TMobile at, what appears at first glance, to be higher prices. It's the TMobile / Sprint (which is all TMobile) network.

    So the question becomes... in the pro/con list, are there any pros? Maybe it does a different pricing model than TMobile that works better for someone? When I looked, it looked like I'd keep my service that I have now, but just pay more for it.



  • So Google Fi seems complex because they offer the option to bring your own phones or buy a Google Fi phone. If you bring your own or just choose one that you like, you get nothing but TMobile coverage. To be able to switch between carriers, you must buy a Fi phone. So the biggest two features of Google Fi... bringing your own phone and multi-carrier coverage, are essentially mutually exclusive. You get one or the other.

    Second, Google Fi only works with TMobile and TMobile's second brand, Sprint, nationally. The only non-T-Mobile service is US Cellular. Which is a nice additional for coverage, but not a huge deal unless you are in one of their core regions. However, TMobile and US Cellular share bands and are roaming partners, so this "unique" feature of Google Fi already exists for TMobile.

    Looking at Tom's Hardware's review of Fi vs T service, for normal usage T plans came out cheaper, but Fi was more flexible.

    There is an expectation that the T and Sprint networks will become merged (if only in the phones) in the near future making Google Fi's primary benefit completely moot anyway.

    Supposedly Google Fi gives you access to lots of wifi hotspots all over the place. This is a neat idea, and might be hugely beneficial. But doesn't seem like something that would matter very often or would often be available. Most places where one goes today wifi is already free, when it isn't, generally there is no wifi anyway. Not sure if this has any practical value in the modern world.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Google Fi:

    Google never got Google Voice working universally. Some people love it, some can't even get it.

    Google Voice is a forwarding service. There are some API workarounds to use it with a PBX, but nothing I would ever do for a business service.

    People use it all the time as a spam filter number.

    It is basically shit.



  • @scottalanmiller the T-Mobile/Sprint merger is far from certain. I think the state lawsuits are total bullshit, but that is reality.



  • I was looking at this as there were T-Moblie coverage issues in one of the places my parents use their cellular phones, but it looks like that isn't an issue. I need to just check IMEI's now and see if all can work on T-Mobile and choose a plan.



  • While I'm sure T-Mobile is working on it.. when I tested T 2 years ago in Nebraska... only the major arteries of the city had access, and horrible access at that. I technically live outside the city limits by less than 1/4 mile, but other than AT&T, all other carriers service sucks at best and generally don't work.



  • @Dashrender said in Google Fi:

    While I'm sure T-Mobile is working on it.. when I tested T 2 years ago in Nebraska... only the major arteries of the city had access, and horrible access at that. I technically live outside the city limits by less than 1/4 mile, but other than AT&T, all other carriers service sucks at best and generally don't work.

    While true, at least with TMobile you have excellent WiFi calling at home.



  • @JaredBusch said in Google Fi:

    @Dashrender said in Google Fi:

    While I'm sure T-Mobile is working on it.. when I tested T 2 years ago in Nebraska... only the major arteries of the city had access, and horrible access at that. I technically live outside the city limits by less than 1/4 mile, but other than AT&T, all other carriers service sucks at best and generally don't work.

    While true, at least with TMobile you have excellent WiFi calling at home.

    Or in offices that are often shielded.