T-Mobile (opens in new tab) has launched a pilot scheme offering fiber optic home internet services in New York City. That's according to a report from T-Mo (opens in new tab) which has found that the service is now available in select Manhattan residential buildings.
The pilot scheme is currently offering 940Mbps upload and download speeds along with a WiFi 6 router as spotted by Engadget on T-Mobile's new fiber product page (opens in new tab).
For now, T-Mobile is using a third-party provider's fiber rather than its own lines and, of course, it's a very limited pilot but there's certainly promise here. Our thinking is that it could mean some changes in the future for the best internet providers (opens in new tab) if the scheme expands further afield.
According to reports, the fiber service is being marketed alongside T-Mobile's current 5G wireless home internet offerings. That service delivers average download speeds greater than 100Mbps for most new customers with a minimum 50Mbps speed too. Available for around $60 per month to 30 million Americans across 49 states (sorry, Alaska), the company is aiming to sign up 500,00 customers by the end of 2021 and is currently on track. Not bad at all for one of the best cell phone providers (opens in new tab) out there. It's sure to be helped by the fact that T-Mobile provides some of the best 5G coverage in the country.
At this stage, we don't know what T-Mobile's long-term plans for fiber are and, arguably, we doubt they do either. It's likely to come down to how the pilot scheme progresses. There's also no word yet on pricing although it's worth noting that Verizon (opens in new tab) charges around $80 per month for similar speeds with its Fios service.
So, what should you do if you're looking to switch internet providers? Nothing different to usual unless you happen to live in a very small part of Manhattan that happens to be part of the pilot. For now, you're better off sticking to the usual selection of internet providers and maybe boosting your speeds with one of the best web browsers (opens in new tab) too. Still, it'll be interesting to see what happens next. It could be the start of a speed race if we're lucky.