Isn’t it great what real competition can do for the home broadband market? AT&T on Monday announced that its new U-verse with AT&T GigaPower service is now available to residents in Kansas City, which just happens to be the first city where Google launched its Google Fiber service.
Like Google Fiber, the GigaPower service will offer download speeds with a peak of 1Gbps and will cost $70 per month for standalone Internet service, just as Google Fiber does. For $120 per month, AT&T will offer 1Gbps Internet service along with a TV package that includes “free HBO, HBO GO and HD service for 36 months.” AT&T first brought GigaPower to Austin, Texas, which just happens to be another Google Fiber market — funny how that works.
However, if you’re considering taking the plunge on GigaPower, there is a catch you should know about. Ars Technica notes that unless you want AT&T to keep track of everything you do and sell that information to third-party advertisers, you’ll have to pay $29 more per month to opt out of its Internet Preferences program.
Of course, given Google’s own track record with keeping track of customers’ online activity, we’re not sure Google Fiber has a major advantage over AT&T in this respect.