Verizon to Expand Its Revolutionary, All-Fiber Network and FiOS Internet, TV Services in Hampton Roads, Va.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Verizon is ramping up its all-fiber-optic network upgrade in the Hampton Roads area, bringing the benefits of the fastest Internet speeds on the market and superior picture quality to more consumers. 

Verizon, the company that is building the nation's most advanced digital all-fiber-optic network straight to customers' homes, has begun its all-fiber construction in parts of Hampton, and the company plans to begin upgrading facilities in the coming months in Poquoson, Portsmouth and York County.  Verizon also continues its build in Chesapeake, Newport News and Virginia Beach.

"FiOS Internet and TV services have been an extraordinary hit with consumers in Hampton Roads and across Virginia, and more residents will be able to join the FiOS family in 2008," said Robert W. Woltz Jr., president of Verizon Virginia.  "Verizon is offering consumers a superior choice by providing the best network available at a competitive price for voice, data and video services."

The network uses hair-thin strands of fiber and optical electronics to directly link homes and businesses to Verizon's network and replaces the traditional copper-wire connections for voice, high-speed Internet and TV.

Verizon must obtain cable franchises from government officials in Hampton, Portsmouth, Poquoson and York County in order to offer FiOS TV service.  Verizon currently has franchises and is offering FiOS TV in Chesapeake, Newport News and Virginia Beach, as well as other municipalities in Virginia.

Customer Feedback about FiOS Services Is Positive

Customer reaction to Verizon's FiOS services has been very positive, with broadband and TV subscribers rapidly increasing in markets in Virginia and across the country.   

At the end of March 2008, Verizon was marketing its FiOS Internet service to more than 7.9 million customers in more than 2,000 communities in 17 states.  Also at the end of March, Verizon's FiOS TV service was available to about 6.5 million premises in 13 states: California, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas and Virginia. 

And customers are responding to the superior reliability, quality and speed of FiOS services.  At the end of the first quarter 2008, the company had 1.8 million FiOS Internet connections nationwide, an increase of 262,000 during the quarter.  Verizon added a net of 263,000 new FiOS TV customers in the quarter, with a total of 1.2 million FiOS TV customers at the end of the quarter. 

Superior Network, Awesome Services

Companies that install all-fiber networks gain other advantages in addition to new and superior services for customers.  For example, fiber offers reliable service in stretches of wet weather that can affect copper-based networks. 

"Verizon's 100 percent fiber-optic network is technically superior to other communication platforms because it offers faster data speeds than those currently available, as well as voice and video capabilities," said Ty Stephenson, Verizon's vice president of customer operations in Virginia.  "This new network will have greater reliability and lower maintenance costs. By deploying fiber to homes and businesses in our territory, Verizon is transforming its wireline business into 21st century technology."

Verizon offers four tiers of FiOS Internet service for consumers:* 

  • 5 Mbps (megabits per second) downstream and 2 Mbps upstream. Suited for Internet surfing and basic computer functions.

  • 15 Mbps downstream and 2 Mbps upstream. Appealing to families that have multiple computers and various needs such as media downloads and the ability to access or share large files.

  • 30 Mbps downstream and 15 Mbps upstream. Designed for communications-intensive power users with significant bandwidth needs, such as telecommuters or work-at-home households and avid online gamers.

  • 15 Mbps downstream and 15 Mbps upstream. This service provides upload speeds for sending large files up to 19 times faster than cable's typical upload speed of about 768 kilobits per second (Kbps).

In addition, FiOS TV offers a broad collection of all-digital programming, 27 high-definition channels in the Hampton Roads market, more than 10,000 video-on-demand titles, and more.  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 has developed attractive service bundles featuring FiOS Internet and FiOS TV products, where they are available.  For example, a three-service package featuring Verizon's Freedom Essentials unlimited calling plan, FiOS Internet Service at 5 Mbps downstream and FiOS TV Premier is available for as little as $104.99 a month with a one-year commitment.

Fiber Network Construction Benefits Economy

The significant network transformation to all-fiber-optics has created jobs in Virginia.  "In addition to the many benefits our customers enjoy - superior, reliable FiOS services at great prices - our fiber project has had a positive impact on Virginia's economy," said Woltz.  For example, more than 420 Verizon employees provide FiOS technical support for customers at the company's Fiber Solutions Center in Hampton, which opened in March 2005.

* NOTE: Actual (throughput) speeds will vary.

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 more than 67 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 employed a diverse workforce of approximately 232,000 as of the end of the first quarter 2008 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of $93.5 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.