NEW YORK - Building on momentum from a record DSL sales quarter, Verizon will spur its home broadband growth by offering an additional higher-speed DSL service to consumers this summer and by developing new service packages that include residential voice-over-Internet-protocol (VoIP) services.
"We've created one of the best overall values in broadband today, with content, speed, and great service at a very affordable price," said Judy Verses, senior vice president - marketing for Verizon's Retail Markets Group. "Our sales growth shows that when consumers in the mass market think about broadband, more and more often they're choosing DSL for their high-speed connection. And we're not stopping now."
Faster DSL speeds are coming this summer when Verizon Online plans to add a new, additional tier of consumer DSL service with a maximum connection speed of 3Mbps/768Kbps for qualified customers. In addition, when Verizon introduces its consumer VoIP service this quarter, the company will provide it to qualifying Verizon Online DSL customers at a discount.
"Fifty-one percent of Verizon's residential customers have purchased local calling in combination with either Verizon long-distance or Verizon DSL, or both," said Verses. "Our ability to offer customers a compelling array of local, long-distance, wireless, broadband and video services is unmatched by our cable competitors. Expanding our DSL service will allow us to offer even more innovative packages that include services like voice over IP."
Pricing for the higher-speed DSL service and VoIP package will be announced later. Verses said that, like all Verizon Online DSL offerings, pricing for these services will be highly competitive.
This quarter Verizon Online will triple to 384Kbps the upstream speed of its basic DSL offering for qualifying customers. The price for this 1.5Mbps/384Kbps service will remain the same as the current 1.5Mbps/128Kbps service -- $34.95 a month for stand-alone service or $29.95 a month when purchased as part of a package of local and long-distance calling services.
A recent Pew Internet & American Life study shows that DSL now has a 42 percent share of the home broadband market, up from 28 percent in March 2003, and that more and more Internet-users are moving from dial-up to broadband. The study also shows that the number of DSL users at home has more than doubled since March 2003, while the number of home cable-modem users grew by less than one-quarter.
Last week, Verizon announced record sales for its Verizon Online DSL business with the addition of 345,000 new high-speed Internet customers in the first quarter of 2004, representing a 46 percent year-over-year growth rate. The company now has 2.7 million DSL lines in service.
Several Verizon Online initiatives during 2003 contributed to this growth. In May 2003, Verizon Online doubled the maximum connection speed of its entry-level DSL offering to 1.5Mbps/128Kbps while lowering the price of the up to 1.5Mbps service from $59.95 a month to $34.95 a month. At the same time, Verizon lowered the price of basic DSL service to $29.95 a month when purchased as part of a package of Verizon local and long-distance calling services.
Also in May, Verizon launched its partnership with MSN and began offering its DSL customers the broadband-enabled content and services of MSN 8 at no additional charge. Today the MSN service has been upgraded to MSN Premium, which includes critical tools like firewalls, virus protection and parental controls.
Customer satisfaction has improved. The company streamlined its do-it-yourself DSL installation kit, reducing the process to three steps and providing an online tutorial that takes customers through the process from start to finish. The company also continued to make improvements in service-provisioning and customer-care processes.
In 2003 Verizon also made DSL service available to 10 million more lines. Aggressive deployment of DSL in remote terminals allowed Verizon to provide service to more households in communities where Verizon central offices are already provisioned with DSL. In 2004, the company plans to make 7 million more of its lines capable of delivering the service.
A Dow 30 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
DSL service generally is available to homes and offices located within approximately three miles of Verizon's local switching center or "central office." Some technical limitations may interfere with the ability of individual telephone lines to get DSL, even when the lines are within three miles of a DSL-equipped central office.
Downstream and upstream speeds describing Verizon Online's services are maximum connection speeds between the customer's computer and Verizon's DSL equipment. Actual connection speeds may vary from the maximum speeds and may be lower than the advertised line rate. Throughput (download and upload) speeds will be lower than connection speeds and vary based on the telephone line's condition and distance from Verizon's central office, home or office wiring and the server or router speed of sites visited on the Internet, among other factors.
The Pew Internet & American Life Project bears no responsibility for the interpretations presented or conclusions reached based on analysis of its data.