Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) continued its modest expansion into wireless services by rolling out Project Fi support for data-only devices.
The Internet behemoth said Project Fi users can now access cell networks on tablets and other devices using a data-only SIM card. Customers are charged a flat rate of $10 per GB and can order the free, data-only SIMs from their account page on the Project Fi site.
Google said the service is being rolled out gradually and that customers should see the option to order the new SIM cards "in the next couple of days."
Project Fi launched earlier this year as Google's move into the wireless services market for the first time. The MVNO uses the LTE networks of Sprint (NYSE: S) and T-Mobile (NYSE:TMUS) in the U.S., enabling users to dynamically switch between cellular and Wi-Fi. Calls are switched seamless between the two technologies for on-the-go customers.
The service comes with a single plan that provides unlimited domestic talk and text, unlimited international texts, Wi-Fi tethering to use the phone as a hotspot, and cellular access in more than 120 countries. Users can pay $10 per GB of data on top of the basic plan, and are reimbursed a pro-rated amount for unused data.
The phone numbers of Project Fi's customers are stored in the cloud, enabling users to talk and text from a single number across any device that supports Google Hangouts.
While Google's Android is the dominant mobile operating system worldwide, Project Fi continues to play a very minor role in the world of service providers. The offering is supported by only three handsets -- the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6 and Nexus 6P -- and would-be customers must request an invitation from Google to sign up. Project Fi's presence could grow quickly, though, if Google were to pursue the initiative more aggressively.
- see this Google blog post
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