Google cuts cord on broadband in Boston

Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Google parent Alphabet Inc. is giving up on selling wireless broadband service in Boston.

Earlier this week Alphabet informed subscribers of its Webpass business that it is pulling out of the Boston market, but will continue operations in its seven other markets. Webpass is a San Francisco company that uses radio transmitters to deliver high-speed Internet services to businesses and apartment buildings.

“As with any acquisition, we’ve spent some time evaluating the Webpass business,” Alphabet said in a statement. “As a result of our analysis, we’ve made the decision to wind down Webpass operations in Boston. We’ll work with customers and partners to minimize disruption, and there will be no immediate impacts to their Webpass service.”


The company provided no details on why it singled out the Boston operation for closure. But Roger Entner, an industry analyst with Recon Analytics Inc. in Dedham, said it may be because Boston consumers and businesses already have several broadband options. Comcast Corp. provides high-speed landline service to nearly all of Boston; a portion of the city is also served by RCN Inc.; and Verizon Communications is in the midst of a six-year program to build its Fios fiber optic service throughout the city. In addition, two companies offer wireless broadband services similar to that of Webpass — netBlazr Inc. and Starry Inc.

Hiawatha Bray can be reached at