lost in translation...
those faster backbone speeds don't actually mean the customer gets faster tiers availabe right away.. if anything a speed test going across the country will be closer to your rated tier.. for example.. I can get 30 megabits down and 17 up on a speed test in NY-Flordia.. on a 25/25 tier from Verizon. With their provisioning it's usually 30/26-29 on a LOCAL route.. these backbone speeds will extend that upstream to higher caps and not as constrained in the backbone.
Still, Verizon can be more confident in pushing 50/50 instead of 50/20.. We might get back to symmetric tiers once again. Maybe even see 150/150? Force comcast to put up or shut up about docsis 3 channel bonding?
Perhaps Verizon knows there are Achilles' heels in offering faster upload speeds in that the upstream gets "expensive" if you don't OWN the upgraded segments so they are building these segments as a preventative step to saving money in the long run..
If memory serves.. Verzion was implementing & testing 100 GIG-E central office to central office routes along the east coast.. from Virginia to NY, DC (you can guess why DC is involved, not for the residential customer but fulfilling MCI Worldcom's government contract side).
Now for the Fanstasy (goal for 2012 before the summer Olympics with full tier routes to the UK).... 15/5 becomes 50/20
50/20 becomes 75/75... and 150/35 becomes 150/150
Summary: 50/50, 75/75, 150/150
that's gonna make cablemodem 15/2, 30/5, 50/15, 101/(15-20) look slow.