Google Fiber has hit a major roadblock this afternoon with Access CEO Craig Barratt leaving his position and operations in “potential Fiber cities” being paused. The Alphabet division is currently refining its approach to making superfast Internet available in the US.
The official post on Google Fiber blog comes minutes after Recode initially broke the news. Barratt joined Google in 2013 and might be moved to another department, but in the mean time has been asked by Larry Page to stay on as an advisor, much like Tony Fadell of Nest.
Barratt praises the work the Fiber has accomplished since it started five years ago in Kansas City. Despite “Other Bets” continuing to lose money in quarterly earnings, Barratt notes that “our business is solid: our subscriber base and revenue are growing quickly, and we expect that growth to continue.”
In contrast, a report from The Information claims that the initial goal was to sign up five million subscribers in five years. The latest numbers from the end of 2014, report that there are only 200,000 broadband subscribers.
As part of today’s revamp, Fiber’s rollout to eight potential cities is being paused with Access “making changes to focus our business and product strategy. Importantly, the plan enhances our focus on new technology and deployment methods to make superfast Internet more abundant than it is today.”
In regard to cities where the service is already deployed, a spokesperson tells us that:
“Google Fiber will continue in our current cities. We’re still thrilled to offer superfast Internet to residents.”
The new technologies are likely related to a recent FCC filing that revealed Google is seeking to test wireless Fiber broad in 24 cities around the United States. Earlier this year, Google acquired gigabit internet provider Webpass to help continue its expansion and most recently arrived in Charlotte, North Carolina this July.