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Nexus 5x, Nexus 6P compatible with Project Fi; Google’s wireless service puts pressure on carriers

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October 1
11:27 PM 2015

Google recently announced that its new Nexus phones, Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P, are compatible with Project Fi. Google's own mobile network service puts pressure on carriers, changing the way how wireless services work.

In the September 29 event, Google unveiled two new Nexus phones along with "some exciting new treats". The Verge reported that Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P will support Project Fi, becoming the first phones since Nexus 6 to support Google's wireless service. These phones will reportedly be available for purchase in October.

Project Fi was announced last year by Google, Forbes reported. It works by combining Wi-Fi calls with cellular network connection, alternating between carriers like Sprint and T-Mobile. The phone chooses to connect to the available network with the strongest signal.

Google Fi provided a transparent pricing of calls and data in the market. It allowed users in the US to get unlimited calls and texts for $20 and an additional $10 for every data gigabyte they use. All unspent data credit is refundable to customers.

Google's Project Fi challenges traditional mobile carriers to create better pricing and wireless plans for customers. There is also Google Fi's 24-month finance plan for users who want to access the network without having to pay upfront.

One of the wireless service's weaknesses is its limitation to only one kind of phone: the Nexus 6. With the release of Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P, Google can now extend Project Fi to more users and expand its wireless service market niche.

According to Wired, carriers are upping their game since Apple's launch of its iPhone Upgrade Program plan that enables customers to pay for a new phone through instalments paid per month. Now that Google's Project Fi can be accessed by more users through Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P, the carriers may be further pressured to exert more effort in order to grab more market share.

Google's Laura Holmes said that Project Fi could expand up to 10 carriers in the long run. "We're working with our current partners to think about where we want to take the wireless industry over the next several years," said Holmes.

Google and Apple are slowly changing the way how wireless services work. Project Fi is continuously being extended to users through an early access program. Users can quickly connect to the network once they receive their phone and SIM.

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