The new center, located at the company's state headquarters at 234 Washington St., supports Verizon's new fiber-based services, known as FiOS (FYE-ose). The center's staff handles calls from FiOS customers in not only Rhode Island, but throughout the region. Trained specialists answer technical questions and assist customers in correcting any problems.
The center has already created over 100 new jobs, with more expected as Verizon's FiOS Internet Service grows in popularity and availability, and as the company begins offering FiOS TV.
Verizon is building its fiber-to-the-premises network in more than half the states in which it offers landline communication services, including Rhode Island. FiOS Internet Service is currently available in Warwick and North Kingstown.
Donna Cupelo, Verizon region president for Rhode Island and Massachusetts, said, "Today's opening demonstrates our commitment to this great city and state. Much of the credit goes to our state's political leaders for helping to make Rhode Island an attractive place to invest."
Among the public officials helping Verizon executives cut the ribbon for the new center were U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, Gov. Donald Carcieri, State Senator John J. Tassoni Jr. and Providence Mayor David Cicilline.
"With this new $7 million Fiber Solutions Center, Verizon has created more than 100 new, good-paying jobs, with more on the way," Gov. Carcieri said. "Bolstering Rhode Island's economy is one of my administration's top priorities. Over two years ago, I set the goal to create 20,000 net new jobs during my first term in office. With approximately 15,000 new jobs - we're nearly there. I want to thank Verizon for doing so much to help me - and the people of Rhode Island - achieve this important goal."
Mayor Cicilline said, "Verizon has been committed to Providence through thick and thin, and it is fitting that they are at the forefront as a new and exciting economic environment takes hold in our city. These are exactly the kind of jobs that will be the backbone of the 21st-century Providence economy."
William McGowan, business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), Local 2323, said, "This is a great day for labor in Rhode Island. We look forward to continued job growth for our members as Verizon builds the fiber network throughout Rhode Island. FiOS offers Verizon customers unmatched network reliability, incredible speed and exciting new services."
The event follows up on Verizon's commitment in January to open the new center before the end of the year.
Verizon offers three tiers of its FiOS Internet Service for consumers with speeds* up to:
- 5 Mbps downstream and 2 Mbps upstream. Suited for Internet surfing and basic computer functions. $34.95 a month as part of a calling package, or $39.95 a month stand-alone.
- 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. $44.95 a month as part of a calling package, or $49.95 a month stand-alone.
- 30 Mbps downstream and 5 Mbps upstream. Designed for communications-intensive power users with significant bandwidth needs, such as telecommuters or work-at-home households and avid online gamers. $179.95 a month as part of a calling package, or $199.95 a month stand-alone.
Customers who want to determine whether they can order FiOS Internet Service can call 888-GET FIOS (888-438-3467) or visit Verizon's FiOS Web site at www.verizon.net/Fios.
NOTE: Actual (throughput) speeds will vary.
With more than $71 billion in annual revenues, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon has a diverse work force of more than 214,000 in four business units: Domestic Telecom provides customers based in 28 states with wireline and other telecommunications services, including broadband. Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 47.4 million voice and data customers across the United States. Information Services operates directory publishing businesses and provides electronic commerce services. International includes wireline and wireless operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.