T-Mobile has quietly started selling fiber-based home internet, as tipped to T-Mo Report and confirmed by the company to The Verge. T-Mobile says it’s testing fiber optic internet in certain residential buildings in Manhattan as a complement to its fixed wireless offering, which it made available to the public in April. The company isn’t deploying an entirely new fiber network for the pilot; it’s running on a local provider’s fiber lines.
Details on the dedicated T-Mobile Fiber site are thin, but it claims the service offers 940Mbps upload and download speeds. A Wi-Fi 6 router is included, along with chat and e-mail customer support for fiber customers. A T-Mobile rep had no other details to share with us, just that the program is a “very limited pilot” and more information would be shared “when and if” it becomes more widely available.
T-Mobile has some ambitious plans for home internet. As the company tried to convince regulators to let it buy Sprint in 2019, it argued that it would be able to offer competitive wireless home internet with the acquired spectrum. With the deal done, T-Mobile began a pilot program that included 100,000 households by the time it opened up to the general public. On a call with investors last week, the company said it was on track to meet its goal of 500,000 home internet customers by the end of this year.
It’s not clear how big of a role T-Mobile thinks fiber could play in its home internet plans, but it certainly seems to think it’s worth testing the waters.