Borough of Hulmeville Awards Video Franchise to Verizon

HULMEVILLE, Pa. - The Bucks County borough of Hulmeville Monday night (Feb. 6) launched a new era in cable choice for Pennsylvanians, thanks to a unanimous Borough Council vote authorizing Verizon to offer its fiber-optic-powered FiOS TV.

Hulmeville Borough is the first Pennsylvania jurisdiction to grant Verizon a cable franchise. Verizon launched FiOS TV Sept. 22, 2005, in Keller, Texas, unveiling a broad collection of all-digital programming with more than 330 total channels and more on the way. Verizon will announce availability plans for FiOS TV in Hulmeville later this year.

The company also offers FiOS TV in communities in Northern Virginia, Florida, Massachusetts, New York, California and other parts of Texas and will make it available to other Pennsylvania markets where the company has negotiated franchise agreements with local authorities.

"We applaud the Borough Council for its foresight in putting into place the foundation that will allow consumers to choose their video provider as easily as they choose their phone company," said James V. O'Rourke, Verizon Pennsylvania president and CEO. "Competition drives innovation, value and service quality, and we will compete aggressively for business in Bucks County with our FiOS services, which are fueled by our lightning-fast fiber-optic network.

"We plan to bring these benefits to more Bucks County citizens by reaching similar agreements with other municipalities."

Under the 15-year agreement, Verizon will be able to offer FiOS TV to residents of the borough within the next 12 months. In addition, the agreement requires Verizon to pay the community franchise fees based on the company's gross revenues on cable services, among other provisions.

FiOS TV is designed to be a formidable competitor to cable and satellite. It is delivered over Verizon's fiber-to-the-premises network, which has industry-leading quality and reliability. Fiber delivers amazingly sharp pictures and sound, and has the capacity to transmit a wide array of high-definition programming that is so clear and intense it seems to leap from the TV screen. Verizon's network design includes backup facilities not common to traditional cable systems, such as duplicate "head ends" where the TV service receives national programming.

In addition to FiOS TV, Verizon's fiber network also allows the company to offer consumers and businesses high-speed FiOS Internet Service at download speeds of up to 30 mbps (megabits per second) and upload speeds up to 5 mbps.* FiOS Internet Service currently is available to many consumers and small businesses in Bucks County, as well as parts of Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties.

* NOTE: actual (throughput) speeds will vary.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a Dow 30 company, is a leader in delivering broadband and other communication innovations to wireline and wireless customers. Verizon operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 51.3 million customers nationwide; one of the most expansive wholly-owned global IP networks; and one of the nation's premier wireline networks, serving home, business and wholesale customers. Based in New York, Verizon has a diverse workforce of approximately 250,000 and generates annual consolidated operating revenues of approximately $90 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.