Google’s Project Fi Turns Three Years Old

Three years ago on Sunday, Google launched Project Fi.  The MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) solution combined T-Mobile and Sprint as carrier options for the Nexus 6 and allowed for seamless switching between the two carriers automatically.  Fast forward to today, you still have T-Mobile and Sprint in the mix but now you also have U.S. Cellular in there for additional coverage.

The idea was a unique one and remains so today.  Project Fi also brought low cost data usage at the time of its launch, particularly for those who traveled internationally.  That part of the service has improved too as you are not longer as severely throttled on your data speed as you were back three years ago.  As for the cost, it still remains mighty competitive in the market.

At this point it is fair to suggest that the MVNO solution won’t be going away any time soon.  While an official number of subscribers is not known, Google appears to be committed to Fi through continuing to improve the service but also improve app support of Fi features too.

Perhaps the single biggest drawback to Project Fi is the requirement that you have a Fi-enabled phone.  That this point, that means you only have the option for one Moto phone and the Pixel lineup of devices.  While you can throw an activated Fi SIM into other phones (I’m currently using it in an iPhone), the biggest challenge is getting around the MMS/SMS challenges.  To do it, you have to use Hangouts – but it can be done.  If Google did want to grow their subscription base for Fi, allowing non-Google and dare I say non-Android devices would take it to the next level.

I’ve been a Project Fi subscriber for nearly 2 1/2 years and I’m still super pleased with the service and have no problem recommending it.