An internet service provider (ISP) in Japan back by Sony just launched what is said to be the world’s fastest internet for home consumers. Dubbed “Nuro,” So-net Entertainment’s fiber-based internet service launched on Monday in Tokyo and six nearby prefectures with download speeds of 2Gbps and 1Gbps for uploads, all for 4,980 yen (approx. $51) per month.
In comparison, the fastest offerings in the U.S. are from the new Google Fiber service, launched by the internet search giant in only two cities, with a top download speed of 1Gbps, and at a higher price. The trade-off here is that So-net’s service will require a two-year contract and an installation fee of 52,500 yen ($540). However, the ISP says it is currently waiving the pricy fee to customers who apply for the service online.
Unfortunately for most normal consumers, they won’t see internet speeds much beyond 1Gbps, as most computers these days can only except that much data through a wired connection — and significantly less when using WiFi. With such a high population living in a highly condensed area, and homes and apartments packed wherever there’s even a little free space, the roll-out of fiber-based internet services in Tokyo has been relatively easier compared to other places in the world. The real advantage for So-net’s new service will be multiple people using the same connection, as higher speeds can be better handled across different computers.