RALEIGH – Google Fiber now provides 2 gigabit service across its two service areas in North Carolina, Charlotte and the Triangle, after the Google Fiber team found that its customers in the state increased bandwidth demand by 32 percent in 2020. That’s according to Terrill Gosa, the senior director of engineering and operations for Google Fiber, who noted that growing demand in the pandemic has resulted in a “new normal.”

“In North Carolina, customers spent more time using educational platforms like Google Classroom and video conferencing services, like Zoom and Google Meet, as school and work moved online,” said Gosa. He pointed out that peak utilization shifted dramatically at and after the onset of the global coronavirus pandemic, moving from 6–10 p.m. to a much longer peak time period of 8 a.m.–10 p.m.

The company responded to this increase in demand, as more and more activities moved from in-person to online in 2020, said Gosa, despite the network already being built to meet the demand.  For example, said Gosa, “we worked to improve our customers’ experience in the face of rising demand, innovating to increase capacity at every point in our network over the past year, from support facilities right into our customers’ homes.”

Ultra-fast internet from Google Fiber – now available in Charlotte, Triangle – may require tech upgrades

That includes adding neighborhoods and certain residential living environments to the company’s service area.

In Charlotte, Google Fiber is now available in areas of South and North Charlotte, and in apartments and condos in and around uptown. The company is steadily adding services and infrastructure to the region, said Gosa.

And in the Triangle, Google Fiber is available to residents and businesses in Cary, Morrisville, Raleigh, Durham, and is continuing to add more and more neighborhoods in Chapel Hill and Carrboro to its service area.

“While the world is starting to take initial steps back toward normal, with some people heading back to in-person school and to in-person work, we’re continuing to see strong demand and we don’t expect it to ever go back to pre-pandemic levels,” said Gosa. Whether its increased demand for streaming video, gaming, telemedicine, smart home technology, all of which have increased in 2020, said Gosa,”we’re only going to need more bandwidth moving forward.”

That’s why the company is building out infrastructure for its 2 GB service, and adding neighborhoods to its service area. “That peak utilization was consistent throughout the day and night,” said Gosa.  “We are still seeing this same “new normal” 12 months later.”

Google Fiber rolls out ultra-fast 2 gigabit internet service in Triangle