TAMPA, Fla. - The Oldsmar City Council Tuesday night (June 20) voted for consumer choice and competition in the cable-TV market by awarding a franchise to Verizon for its FiOS TV product, to be delivered via its new, all-fiber network.
The Oldsmar franchise brings competition and consumer choice to nearly 14,000 residents in the city and makes Florida one of Verizon's most competitive frontiers for FiOS services. Oldsmar marks the seventh franchise awarded to Verizon in west central Florida, joining the cities of Tampa, Temple Terrace and Bradenton, and Manatee, Hillsborough and Pasco counties. In time, these franchises will enable over 1.5 million residents in Verizon's Florida service territory to enjoy stepped-up competition and more consumer choice for video services in the region.
"We are very pleased to welcome Oldsmar to the family of local governments in the heart of our region that have decided their residents deserve competition, choice, value and industry-leading fiber technology," said Alan Ciamporcero, Verizon's Southeast region president. "We commend the Oldsmar city council and staff for recognizing how technology has changed the market and for bringing an exciting alternative to Oldsmar residents, who are the real winners from today's decision."
Under the 15-year agreement, Verizon will initially offer FiOS TV to approximately 1,000 households in Oldsmar. Service will be extended throughout the entire city and service area of 4,500 households - comprising nearly 14,000 residents -- within three years of the initial offering.
In addition, the agreement contains provisions for four public, educational and governmental access channels; a $22,000 commitment to the city; cable service to public schools and to certain government buildings at no cost; and other important benefits including insurance, indemnification and enforcement protections.
As the fiber network is completed, residents will also enjoy FiOS broadband products, which deliver very fast data speeds ranging from up to 5 Mbps to up to 30 Mbps (megabits per second). Verizon, which launched FiOS TV last September, also offers the service in parts of California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, North Texas and Virginia.
When Verizon reported its 2006 first-quarter earnings, it noted that it has achieved a 10 percent penetration of FiOS TV-eligible households in its Florida market overall. In Temple Terrace, market penetration is 16 percent since FiOS TV was introduced in that community in December.
Verizon's FiOS TV delivers hundreds of digital video and music channels, high-definition programming, video-on-demand content, a robust interactive programming guide and other customer-friendly features. Verizon is constructing its fiber-optic network in 16 states, or more than half the states where it offers landline communications services.
Customers can buy FiOS TV as a stand-alone service or packaged with voice and FiOS high-speed data services, which are already available in some areas. For information on Verizon's FiOS Internet Service and FiOS TV offerings, visit www.verizon.net/fios and www.verizon.net/fiostv.
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.