Google has toyed with the idea of offering mobile service for years. They’ve been rumorred in the past to be in talks with Dish, among others, to provide low-cost (or free) cellular service. The latest news has the search-centric company offering those in Fiber neighborhoods service on the back of Verizon’s network.
The Information is reporting that Google approached Verizon in January, perhaps at CES, to discuss offering service on their network. By operating as an Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), Google would essentially rent bandwidth from Big Red. The inclusion of Fiber in the chatter here suggests this would be avaialble only to those who subscribe to Fiber, and is thus limited in scope and coverage.
Verizon and Google have been on the opposite sides of the aisle in several recent forums. Fiber cuts into Verizon’s FIOS offerings, even though the rollout is limited and slow, currently. Net neutrality is also a bone of contention for the two companies, with Google wanting a wide open Internet while Verizon is happier to play it closer to the chest.
Of course, neither company will comment on this matter, so it’s not known just how reliable this information is. Google has made several passing attempts at cellular service in the past, so we wouldn’t count them out with regard to bringing some type of connection to their customers. Verizon might have the broadest network, but may not be willing to work with Google on something like this. If anything, we think this works best Verizon’s upcoming VoLTE service than it does with their current CDMA signal.