In Sunday’s column about the rapid spread of Internet Glo Fiber in the Roanoke and New River Valleys, I noted my (favorable) impression of the service since signing up last August. This column also solicited impressions from other Glo subscribers.
Below, you can see the result, along with more facts and service tips along the way.
An example: the company hasn’t increased its $80 monthly fee for 1 gigabit Internet service since the summer when I signed up. But if you also bought a bunch of TV channels from Glo last year, you could very well have been hit by a price increase.
Glo Fiber TV packages in Roanoke currently range from $45 to $185 per month. (Glo Fiber also offers a variety of plans that can include Internet, TV, phone, and a cloud-based digital video recording service — these range from $165 to $265 per month.)
A subscriber who has been affected by an increase is Cheryl Holland of southeast Roanoke, who signed up in November.
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“Before that I had Cox Internet, Cox Phone and DirectTV,” Holland wrote in an email. “I was paying an astronomical sum for the two combined. With the Glo Fiber, I would save just under $150 per month.
It’s important to note that when Holland made the switch, she also dropped her landline at the same time – so the monthly price difference isn’t a strict apples-to-apples comparison.
“The installation was quick and I had no serious problems. I agree that their communication about service interruptions is lacking, but they are rare. It also appears that they are trying to improve on the issue,” Holland wrote.
The following month, Holland received an email she hadn’t expected. It was from Glo, and the subject line was “Glo Fiber TV Price Adjustment Notification”.
“I was told in December that my Glo Fiber TV service would go up by $13.93,” Holland wrote. “Still, I’m saving just over $130 a month. .
Holland also sent me the email from Glo Fiber noting the increase. As described in the letter, these would appear to add up to $5 to $10 per month depending on the level of video plan a Glo customer subscribes to.
The bump also likely includes some local taxes. In Virginia, localities may charge taxes on cable television and telephone services, but not for Internet connections only.
The letter Holland received from Glo states, “The reason for the increase is the amount local broadcasters charge us to air their programming. It’s the same program. . . which you could receive for free, if you could pick up their signal with an antenna.
Douglas Carl lives in North Roanoke County and is set to be one of Glo’s first customers there – the company hooked up its first county subscriber in April. And he looks satisfied.
Near the top of his email, Carl wrote: ‘I am sending this mail via my new super-fast internet service. I hope your computer screen survives.
But Carl noted that Glo does not currently offer television services in Roanoke County. Good point. This is because Glo Fiber does not have a franchise agreement in the county that allows it to sell TV channels like a cable company.
Two companies — Cox Communications and Comcast — currently have nonexclusive franchise agreements in Roanoke County to sell cable television, said Gray Craig, a Roanoke County spokesperson.
To sell television services, Glo “would have to enter into a franchise agreement with the county,” Craig said. That would require an affirmative vote from the oversight board, he added. Prior to such a vote, the board would schedule a public hearing.
A Glo Fiber spokesperson said the company intends to seek such a franchise.
“This is a federal and state requirement,” said Chris Kyle, vice president of Glo. “We would like to do this in the future (probably late 2022 or early 2023).”
Bruce Harper of Blacksburg signed up in early May.
“I’ve had my Glo Fiber service for almost 3 weeks now and I’m a happy customer,” he wrote.
“When the pandemic started, my church went to online services, which were recorded. I upload the video to our website, usually a file over 1 gigabyte. Initially, it was a process of several hours , but Comcast recently made some changes that dropped the download time to 30-45 minutes I was also paying close to $100 a month for the [Comcast] a service.
“Comcast is now a thing of the past and I’m thrilled with the speed boost,” added Harper.
With Glo Fiber, “now I can download the video file over 1 gigabyte in about a minute. The streaming video doesn’t buffer and I’m not aware of any interruptions. Color me incredibly happy with Glo Fiber.”
He also noted that the Eero wireless routers provided by Glo, which the company does not initially charge for, are not free forever.
“Looking at my first bill showing the service I was getting, I noticed Eero equipment ($10/month but free for the first 12 months) was listed.”
Stuart French, Glo project manager, said the company is currently offering one year of “Wall-to-Wall WiFi” coverage at no cost, using Eero routers provided by Glo. The fee is $10 per month thereafter.
It’s $10 per household, not per Eero modem, French added. Glo Fiber will install as many Eero modems as needed for wall-to-wall coverage.
“This is a promotion for new customers. This promotion may change from month to month,” French told me.
About those wireless routers: The two that came with my system sent enough signal around our four-bedroom house to connect a variety of wireless devices. But our wireless connected devices seem to run at slightly slower speeds than the 1 gigabit service I get on my desktop computer, which is hardwired into a modem provided by Glo).
Finally I heard from Peter Nylander. He lives in the Raleigh Court area and reminds us that Glo Fiber may not be for everyone, like baseball fans.
“I really wanted the superior value that Glo Fiber offers,” Nylander wrote. But there was a catch.
“As a baseball fan, many games of interest are broadcast on regional sports networks. My off market [Major League Baseball] The streaming package does not include “on the market” games.
“Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles are considered ‘in the market’. These games are only available on local regional sports networks, [the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network and Mid-Atlantic Sports Network2],” Nylander noted.
“Research on the matter showed that Cox recently signed a multi-year agreement to carry MASN channels. They are not available to Glo-Fiber customers. Pretty nifty of Cox, huh?”