Project Fi gets new name, broader device compatibility - Mobile World Live

Project Fi gets new name, broader device compatibility

28 NOV 2018

Google’s three-year old MVNO venture finally graduated from project status to become Google Fi, taking on the more official title as the company introduced support for iPhone and popular Android devices.

The service previously supported only a handful of phones, including Google’s Pixel and Nexus, but the company said users will now be able to sign up with “the majority of Android devices”, including flagships from Samsung, LG Electronics, Moto and OnePlus. To ensure compatibility, though handsets must run Android 7.0 or higher and receive LTE bands 2 and 4.

For the first time, Fi will also support iPhones, albeit in beta. Compatible iPhone models span the iPhone 5S and up, running iOS 11 or higher. Google also noted iPhones will require “a few extra steps to get set up” compared to Android models.

Earlier this month, Google beefed up the Fi service with a new VPN feature and a software update to smooth network handoffs for users jumping between Wi-Fi and the networks of its three mobile operator partners (T-Mobile US, Sprint and US Cellular).

All users will have access to Fi features including bill protection and international coverage. But despite the broader device support, Google warned only phones custom built for Fi will be able to switch between multiple cellular networks and access to the new VPN feature.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana is Mobile World Live's US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana came to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and CED Magazine, digital-only...

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