Verizon today announced a new promotion that delivers new savings for users willing to bundle FiOS with Verizon Wireless service. According to a company announcement
, the new promotion, dubbed Double Up
, can save customers who buy both FiOS and wireless services $20 per month ($480 over two years). To get the promotion, you need to have a Verizon Wireless account with a smartphone on it, and you need to subscribe to a FiOS Quantum triple play (at speeds of 50 Mbps Internet or higher).
The offer starts today and lasts through April 19. In an age where existing customers don't get much promotion love, it's important to note this is for new and
existing users. Still you have to wonder if this even fully counters the suite of rate hikes Verizon has been hitting FiOS users with over the last few years.
Late last month we noted how
Google Fiber had announced they were working with 34 cities in nine regions on how to best prepare themselves for faster fiber broadband. While the press generally misread the announcement as saying that these cities would be getting Google Fiber, it seems like only one or two actually will by the time this new initiative is over.
The other day we noted how Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam insisted that the "most important" thing that people needed to understand when talking about net neutrality was that heavy users should pay Verizon more. As we noted at the time
, the idea that heavy users must pay more -- or that there's some kind of pay inequity in place despite the fact that everybody
pays a lot for bandwidth already -- is the cornerstone of justifying low usage caps and per-byte fees, which until now aren't being imposed on FiOS.
Responding to Google Fiber's offer of symmetrical 1 Gbps lines for $70, add Verizon to the list of companies who don't think you need that speed (or, more importantly, that price) right now. Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam didn't mention FiOS's frozen expansion, but he did suggest that the 300 and 500 Mbps currently offered by the telco was enough until something comes along that can really demand that kind of connectivity. story continues..
As we've recently noted
, Austin is starting to resemble the kind of competitive market most of us only dream about. Thanks to Google Fiber, AT&T is now planning to offer $70, 1 Gbps connections in the city -- recently joined by Grande Communications, who says they too will offer 1 Gbps lines for $65 a month
Back in January of 2011 Verizon proudly unveiled their creatively-named Home Monitoring and Control
home automation service, launching the service later that same year
with a $10 monthly fee for Verizon customers. Several years later and Verizon has quietly killed off the service
, though they're letting existing customer continue to use the platform.
Verizon recently has been backing away from FiOS promotions with a dedicated focus on raising user rates
and fees, but today bucked that trend slightly by announcing a new two-year FiOS price lock guarantee for new users. According to a company announcement
, new customers who order FiOS Internet, TV and voice service before April 19 can get locked into a fixed price for two years.
Akamai has released the company's latest State of the Internet Report
, which now tracks everything from average broadband speeds to IPv6 adoption by tracking the millions of users who traverse the Akamai network annually. According to the latest data, there was a global 29 percent speed increase.
Verizon has released the company's fourth quarter earnings
, which indicate that big red posted a net income of $7.9 billion on revenues of $31.02 billion. As always most of that money came courtesy of wireless, where Verizon added 1.7 million retail connections (including tablets and other devices) for a grand total of 102.8 million retail connections -- most of them now under Verizon's pricey shared data plans. On the wireline side, Verizon added 126,000 net FiOS broadband lines and 92,000 net TV subscribers for 6.1 million FiOS broadband and 5.3 million Fios TV customers. 46% of users subscribe to 50 Mbps or higher speeds. DSL defections resulted in a net gain of just 20,000 broadband customers.
For much of the last decade Seattle has explored the idea
of building their own ultra-fast broadband network. Much of that motivation was fueled by the sub-standard service provided in the region by regional telco Qwest (now CenturyLink), which in turn resulted in regional cable operator Comcast not working very hard.
Stop the Cap story continues..
directs your attention to the fact that AT&T's recent talk about network upgrades have started making investors nervous. AT&T has traditionally put investor returns far ahead of fixed-line network infrastructure investment or customer support, and their recent announcement of 1 Gbps fiber to the home service in Austin
in particular seems to have thrown some investors for a loop.
Back in May, Verizon informed FiOS customers that replacing the back up batteries in their ONT would no longer be gratis, the telco charging users $44 for a battery available on Amazon for $18
. Users grumbled (given they don't even technically own the unit) but either complied, or just let their batteries die and tolerated the occasional dead battery ONT beep most FiOS users know all too well.
We recently noted
that the nation's largest municipal fiber operation, Utopia, was forcing partner cities to sign non-disclosure agreements regarding a significant deal that could help the effort's financial viability in a big way. Given Provo's recent deal Google Fiber was a possibility.
, the nation's largest deployment of municipal broadband service, has been turning heads for a wave of non-disclosure agreements they've made the mayors of the network's 11 partner cities sign. According to the Standard Examiner
, the NDAs require that Utopia partners remain quiet about a "possible major new partner and project." That partner isn't named, but the story calls said partner an "Internet giant."
After Google acquired the Provo, Utah municipal network
for a song, obvious speculation leads to wondering if Google would be interested in acquiring Utopia as well and integrating the two networks.
AT&T has officially announced that the company's first 1 Gbps fiber to the home users (who'll initially see 300 Mbps until next year) have come online in Austin. The "GigaPower" service was announced one day after Google Fiber announced they were coming to Austin
, though AT&T to this day Google Fiber played no role in this announcement.
Last Wednesday, the New York Public Service Commission ordered Verizon to provide the public with un-redacted cost information about providing phone service on Fire Island, New York. The directive denied Verizon’s request to be exempt from disclosing cost documents. story continues..
TDS Telecom has announced that the company is now offering speeds of 300 Mbps across the company's footprint in Tennessee, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Georgia, and Minnesota. Though the company's press release
fails to mention price, users can expect to pay around $100 and up for the service depending what kind of additional services they're willing to bundle. The company announced they'd be expanding their fiber to the home offerings last July
, using a Google "fiberhood" approach to generate interest among potential communities. Locals interested to see where TDS has planned fiber upgrades should check out the companies expansion map here
. You can also check out our reader reviews of TDS Telecom here
Nearly two months after announcing that they'd be offering 1 Gbps service to a select few development residents in Las Vegas
, CenturyLink has announced that they've started lighting up their first ultra-high-speed customers. The company's announcement
goes out of its way to avoid specifics of any kind, only stating that 1 Gbps connections are being offered to "select northwest Las Vegas communities" in the Northwest area of the city.
Cox has launched a fiber to the home trial in Orange County, California
, joining a growing number of companies that are offering fiber to the home service -- albeit only in select higher-end developments where the cost of deployment is minimal. Cox's first fiber to the home trial is estimated to cover just 1,000 homes at the moment, though that total will reach 14,000 as Cox runs fiber to the entire development over the next year or two. Even though there's fiber, Cox says the services and data speeds being offered "are similar to what Cox offers over traditional HFC." AT&T has done something similar with their FTTH U-Verse deployments, capping them at the same speed
as their copper-based offerings to deliver a "consistent experience."
"As I understand it, Google Fiber is basically a science experiment," cable overbuilder RCN tells Ars Technica
in a piece on why most carriers aren't matching Google Fiber's 1 Gbps speeds (spoiler: limited competition). "I have no doubt that there will come a day that gigabit speeds are necessary in our daily lives, but I'm not sure that day is here yet," insists RCN. "When it's here, RCN will be offering it." As I've noted a few times
, carriers would prefer the national conversation be focused on why you don't need 1 Gbps
, instead of why their services are slow and very expensive (spoiler: limited competition).
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