AT&T celebrated Google Fiber’s reported struggles yesterday by publishing a blog post lecturing its competitor about the difficulties of broadband investment. AT&T also criticized Google for seeking favors from the government – something AT&T would never do, of course.
The blog post is titled “Broadband investment: Not for the faint of heart” and is written by AT&T VP Joan Marsh, who manages AT&T’s regulatory interests at the federal government. It provides a timeline of Google investment in broadband infrastructure starting with a bid on spectrum in 2007, saying that the company has never lived up to its grand ambitions. The latest example is Google Fiber, which has reportedly fallen well short of subscriber goals and may be downsizing. (Google hasn’t confirmed or denied the reports of impending layoffs.)
AT&T says the “moral of the story” is that “building reliable, ubiquitous high-speed broadband connectivity is tough.”
“Google Fiber will no doubt continue its broadband experiments, while coming up with excuses for its shortcomings and learning curves,” AT&T wrote. “It will also no doubt continue to seek favoritism from government at every level. Just last week Google Fiber threatened the Nashville City Council that it would stop its fiber build if an ordinance Google Fiber drafted wasn’t passed. Instead of playing by the same rules as everyone else building infrastructure, Google Fiber demands special treatment and indeed in some places is getting it, unfairly.”