Consumer Choice for Cable Service Leaps Forward in Washington Metropolitan Area

FALLS CHURCH, Va. - Nearly 500,000 northern Virginia residents are a major step closer to choice for their cable television services, thanks to recent votes in Arlington and Loudoun counties authorizing Verizon to offer its fiber-optic-powered FiOS TV.

Action by the Arlington County Board on June 13 and the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors June 20 brings to 13 the number of jurisdictions in the region to grant Verizon a cable franchise. The other jurisdictions are:

  • In Maryland: Howard County, Laurel and Bowie.
  • In Virginia: Fairfax, Henrico and Prince William counties; Fairfax city, Falls Church, Dumfries, Herndon and the Marine Corps Base at Quantico.

These 13 franchises cover more than 872,000 households with approximately 2.4 million potential viewers.

In addition, the Leesburg Town Council in Virginia is scheduled to consider a franchise with Verizon at a meeting later this month.

Verizon, which launched FiOS TV last September in Keller, Texas, currently offers the service in parts of northern Virginia, Howard County in Maryland, California, Florida, Massachusetts, New York and Texas.

"These agreements represent a huge step forward for consumers who are eager for a true competitive choice in video service providers," said Robert W. Woltz Jr., president of Verizon Virginia. "Competition drives innovation, value and service quality, and we will compete aggressively for business with our FiOS services, which are fueled by our lightning-fast fiber-optic network."

Verizon Continues FiOS TV Rollout

Verizon expects to begin taking orders for FiOS TV later this week in the Centreville area, and next week in parts of Arlington and Loudoun counties. Consumers can call 800-880-2941 to see if they are able to order FiOS TV. Information on packages and prices is available at www.verizon.net/fiostv.

FiOS TV is designed to be a formidable competitor to cable and satellite, offering a broad collection of all-digital programming with more than 400 total channels, two dozen high-definition channels, more than 2,500 video on demand titles and more. 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 the Washington area.

* NOTE: actual (throughput) speeds will vary.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a Dow 30 company, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 53 million customers nationwide. Verizon Business operates one of the most expansive wholly-owned global IP networks. Verizon Telecom is deploying the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network to deliver the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services to customers. Based in New York, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 250,000 and generates annual consolidated operating revenues of approximately $90 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.