Google Fiber’s launch in Kansas City has been phenomenally successful. Customers are thrilled to receive the wiz-bang speed along with an excellent customer experience at every step from installation to customer service. Scott Canon shares the overwhelmingly positive reviews from Google Fiber’s first customers (“Google Earns Good Grades” The Kansas City Star, 4/29/13, pp. A1, A7):
“Time and again they talk of friendly installers and helpful customer service folks—Google representatives fairly easy to reach either by email or phone. The company also responds to problems in an online forum.” (p. A7)
Given the exceptionally fast Internet speed coupled with the very positive customer experience, the local competition has new reasons to update their SWOT analyses (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats). Google Fiber presents them with a level of competition hitherto unseen in Kansas City. This is significant because unfortunately for the competition, many customers have an unpleasant history with them:
“Those who buy their TV lineup from Google mostly talk about the delight of dumping predecessors, cable and phone companies that have had the chance over decades to disappoint customers.” (p. A1)
Customers’ memories run long. The traditional high-speed ISPs may begin to see an exodus. On the other hand, if they can revamp their existing technologies sufficiently and improve their customer experience, perhaps they can become more attractive than we have ever dreamed possible. Digital phone, cable, and high-speed Internet might become very interesting in Kansas City.