Google Fiber, launched in the Kansas City market with great fanfare to bring ultra-fast internet to home users, is hitting the brakes.
The company said the pause on its national expansion is unlikely to change the rate at which it continues to build out in Kansas City. And while the company expects to cut back staff in some places, layoffs of Google Fiber employees aren’t in the works in Kansas City.
But the announcement made on a Google Fiber blog Tuesday suggested a fuller national rollout — important to Kansas City because it gives developers incentive to invent new uses for the mega-broadband and provides clout to the service in bargaining for TV programming — won’t come soon.
Google parent Alphabet Inc. reset the project on a more humble footing on Tuesday. Craig Barratt, head of the Access unit that includes Google Fiber, is leaving, and about 9 percent of staff is being let go, according to a person familiar with the situation. The business has about 1,500 employees, meaning there will be more than 130 job losses.