You can get TV service along with Google Fiber, giving you another choice besides cable or satellite. Google Fiber TV includes more than 150 high-definition (HD) channels, some standard definition (SD) channels and optional premiums such as HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, STARZ and sports channels. Local broadcast channels are included as well.
The TV box is a set-top box that allows you to access your channels. You use your remote control to bring up a guide that's a lot like a typical cable TV guide. You can browse or search for content, look at information about current and upcoming programs, and pick what you want to watch. You can also access on-demand content, rent movies and set programs to record to the storage box.
Google Fiber TV also includes several built-in apps:
The Netflix and Vudu apps require subscriptions to those services. Netflix even has Super HD content that can be accessed through Google Fiber. From the Apps & More menu, you can also access your personal photos, music and video content.
At first HBO, ESPN, Comedy Central and Disney weren't included, but they have since been added (HBO and other premium services are available as optional paid extras). As of August 2014, Google Fiber subscribers who pay for HBO cannot access HBO GO, an online service that allows people to watch HBO content away from their TVs. An agreement could be struck to include it in the future.
Google Fiber does offer something called TV Everywhere (TVE) that allows you to watch shows from certain channels on a computer or mobile device when you are away from home. You can get the following TVE channels if you have Google Fiber TV and any required subscriptions:
- NBC Olympics TVE
- Showtime Anytime (requires paid subscription)
- STARZ Play (requires paid subscription)
- Watch ABC
- Watch ABC Family
- Watch Disney
- Watch ESPN
- Watch Longhorn
The DVR that comes with Google Fiber can store up to 2 terabytes (TB) of data, which translates to abound 500 hours of high-definition programming. It will even record multiple shows simultaneously, up to eight at a time. Many DVRs and TV services can only record one show at a time, and their hard drives hold far less data. Google's storage box also allows you to store personal files, like photos, music and home videos, which you can view or play through any of your connected TVs via the apps menu. In the case of audio files, you can also play them through audio equipment connected to the TV box or TV, but the remote won't work to control audio devices.
If you download the Google Fiber mobile app onto a compatible mobile device, you can use that device as a remote, to search through shows and movies without interrupting what's playing, to schedule and manage DVR recordings and to share to social media, among other things.