Consumers in 2 More Western Mass. Towns Now Have High-Speed Access to the Internet

ROWE, Mass. - Consumers and businesses in Monroe and Rowe, Mass., now have access to the Internet - at rocket speeds powered by Verizon.

Verizon announced Tuesday (Sept. 16) that its High Speed Internet service is being offered in most areas of the two towns, the latest of 24 western Massachusetts communities where Verizon is bringing the service. Previously, these communities did not have access to broadband service. 

Earlier this month, Verizon introduced the service in the western Massachusetts communities of Blandford, Becket, Colrain, Cummington, Florida, Goshen, Middlefield, New Marlborough, Plainfield, Sandisfield, Tolland, Washington and Worthington. The project is completely funded by Verizon, which is investing an additional $200 million in Massachusetts this year to expand its world-class broadband network.

Verizon's High Speed Internet service will give Internet users the ability to download at speeds of 768 Kbps (kilobits per second), 21 times faster than the current dial-up capability.

"We are proud to be able to bring the benefits of broadband Internet service to consumers in these two towns today and soon to thousands more consumers in western Massachusetts," said Donna C. Cupelo, Verizon region president for Massachusetts and Rhode Island. "Verizon's investments in Massachusetts have been and will continue to be a major contributor to growing the state's economy."

Cupelo said the company worked closely with state Sen. Ben Downing and state Rep. Dan Bosley on the company's plans to bring high speed broadband service to Monroe and Rowe. "They challenged us to work creatively with them on expanding rural broadband availability in western Massachusetts," Cupelo said.

Verizon will continue to work with state and local officials as the company completes its announced deployment of High Speed Internet service to other towns in the area and explores options for further deployment under the governor's broadband bond bill adopted by the Legislature earlier this year.

"Franklin County legislators have been tireless advocates for expanding broadband access in this region," said Cupelo.

By year's end, Cupelo said, Verizon expects to also make the service available in Hancock, Heath, Leverett, Leyden, Montgomery, New Ashford, Pelham, Westhampton and Windsor and to make the service more widely available in Shutesbury.

Verizon will notify potential customers of the availability of the service in a number of ways, including direct mail, media advertising and contact with local officials in each community. Consumers can call 1-800-870-9999 or visit www.verizon.com to order the service or to determine whether the service is available to their home or business. Spanish-speaking customers can call 1-800-430-2222.

When the work is completed, Verizon expects High Speed Internet service will be available to 70 percent of the company's customer lines, on average, in the 24 towns. The new broadband deployment of Verizon's High Speed Internet network will reach three-fourths of the western Massachusetts communities identified by the state as having no high speed broadband services.

Prices for Verizon High Speed Internet service start at $19.99 per month.

The service is delivered on a dedicated line from Verizon's central office to the customer's home and is backed by live, 24 x 7 customer service and technical support.  High Speed Internet subscribers have access to an extensive collection of features and services, including online protection with Verizon Internet Security Suite; Verizon Enhanced Email; Verizon Premium Tech Support; Online gaming, free news from ABC News Now; free sports from ESPN360; and more. 

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, 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 nearly 69 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 228,600 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of $93.5 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.