TAMPA, Fla. - Verizon's FiOS TV service in Florida marks its second year of operation Thursday (Dec 6), with greater services, broader market coverage and an ever-growing base of FiOS double- and triple-play customers.
"Customer response to FiOS in the Tampa Bay area has been terrific," said Suri Surinder, Verizon's Southeast region senior vice president and general manager. "The demand for our all-fiber-optic voice, high-speed Internet and TV bundles has made us one of the top markets for Verizon FiOS adoption throughout the country."
When Verizon announced third quarter earnings on Oct. 30, the company reported 717,000 FiOS TV customers and1.3 million FiOS Internet customers. Verizon also reported that, of the customers across the country who could get each service, 15.2 percent had purchased TV subscriptions and 20 percent had subscribed to FiOS Internet.
"Market penetration for FiOS in the Tampa Bay area to date is running ahead of our national average by a few percentage points," said Surinder. "We've also experienced a 120 percent increase in our customer base from year one to year two. We were the second market, after Texas, to offer FiOS TV, and we expect to continue signing up customers in record numbers locally."
Consumers have witnessed dramatic growth in the features of both the TV and Internet service as well as its availability in the region since December 6, 2005. Examples include:
- An increase in the number of channels on the all-digital FiOS Premier TV package from 180 to more than 200 and a 55 percent increase in high-definition (HD) channels, from 20 to 31.
- The introduction of the Verizon FiOS Home Media DVR, which features a multi-room digital video recorder; a new interactive media guide that helps viewers find and select programming and content; FiOS TV Widgets, an on-screen application for obtaining localized weather, traffic and community information; and a new remote control.
- Even faster broadband service, with download speeds increasing from a range of up to 5 Mbps to 30 Mbps (megabits per second) to a range of up to 10-50 Mbps, and upload speeds that started at a range of 2-5 Mbps and increasing to today's range of 2-20 Mbps.
- The first symmetrical Internet offering - 20 Mbps downstream and 20 Mbps upstream.
- A dramatic expansion in the availability of FiOS TV, from 10,000 households in Temple Terrace in Hillsborough County in 2005 to 620,000 households to date in portions of Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Manatee and Sarasota counties.
- Overall expansion of the fiber network, from 400,000 premises passed at the end of 2005 to 800,000 households and small businesses expected to be passed by the end of this month, and more than 54 million feet of fiber deployed to date.
- Two years ago, Verizon had just one video franchise in the state, in Temple Terrace, and had to secure franchises on a time-consuming, costly per municipality basis. Today, the state-issued franchising process provides coverage for every new city or county as necessary, further speeding vigorous competition in the marketplace.
"There is no question that the introduction of the fiber network and the FiOS services it delivers has changed the Tampa Bay regional market -- forever and for the better," said Surinder. "Consumers have greater choices today with FiOS, and market dynamics have required us to be even better at our service delivery, with a constant eye toward delivering excellent customer service. We will introduce even more exciting innovations in 2008 for FiOS customers. With so much change in just two years, just imagine what the years ahead will bring."
Verizon, providing FiOS services on the nation's most advanced digital, all-fiber-optic network, now offers FiOS TV in each of the six counties it serves in west central Florida. Recently, the company announced that it will feature 150 high-definition channels on its FiOS system by the end of 2008. In addition to Florida, Verizon currently offers FiOS TV in parts of California, Delaware, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas and Virginia.
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 63.7 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 has a diverse workforce of nearly 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.