Verizon Expands High-Speed Internet Access in Illinois

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Verizon will soon be raising the speed limit in 48 rural communities throughout Illinois with the introduction of its super-fast digital subscriber line (DSL) Internet access service for consumers and businesses. The action is part of Verizon's initiative to deliver its fast, affordable DSL service to thousands more consumers and businesses in the state over the next year.

The communities scheduled to receive Verizon Online DSL service for the first time are: Ashton, Ava, Bellmont, Brimfield, Capron, Chatsworth, Chrisman, Clay City, Colfax, Creal Springs, Cypress, Dakota, Elkhart, Enfield, Evansville, Galva, Grand Ridge, Greenfield, Ladd, McLean, McLeansboro, Meredosia, Monroe Center, Murrayville, New Holland, Noble, Norris City, Odell, Palestine, Paulton, Pearl City, Piper City, Raleigh, Saybrook, Shabbona, Shirland, Stanford, St. Francisville, Stonefort, Sumner, Toluca, Walnut, Washburn/Low Point, Wayne City, Wenona, West Salem, Willow Hill and Wyoming.

Upgrades to Verizon's network have already begun, and the broadband service will be rolled out in stages to customers later this year and in 2007, allowing more people to take advantage of Verizon's affordable high-speed Internet access, as well as other great new offerings, said Philip Wood, vice president of public affairs, policy and communications in Illinois.

"Our DSL customers can experience the Internet fast lane to listen to music, play games, watch streaming video, shop and work from home," said Wood. "This expansion underscores Verizon's ongoing commitment to serve our rural Illinois markets."

Verizon's new packaged offerings allow residential customers to combine their local telephone service with various plans that offer unlimited nationwide long-distance service for a total price of as little as $39.99 per month, and DSL for as little as $19.99 for a combined cost of $59.98.  For the convenience of one-stop shopping, DIRECTV service from Verizon can also be added, providing residential customers with unlimited use of their telephone, high speed-Internet access, and in-home video service for about $100 per month.  Verizon also offers DSL plans for business customers.

Verizon Freedom Essentials offers unlimited local, regional and domestic long-distance calling with the three most popular calling features - Home Voice Mail, Call Waiting and Caller ID for as little as $49.99 a month.  Verizon Freedom Value, offering any-distance, unlimited domestic calling but no calling features, costs $39.99 and is the company's lowest-priced any-distance calling plan.  Either of these plans can be combined with the company's upcoming high-speed Internet Access services and entertainment services from DIRECTV, enabling consumers to receive all their home communications needs in one package.

Verizon will offer two high-speed DSL Internet service plans to qualifying consumers, one with maximum connection speeds of up to 768 Kbps (kilobits per second) downstream and 128 Kbps upstream and another with maximum connection speeds of up to 3.0 Mbps (megabits per second) downstream and 768 kbps upstream.* 

The DIRECTV Total Choice package offers more than 135 channels of 100 percent digital video and music programming, providing a higher-quality picture and sound than cable's older analog signals.  The package also offers the ability to add advanced services like video recorders, interactivity and high-definition programming.  Customers with a qualifying local service package and DIRECTV service can get bundle discounts and a single bill for calling, Internet and entertainment services.

* NOTE: Actual (throughput) speeds will vary.

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 nearly 55 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 252,000 and generates annual consolidated operating revenues of approximately $90 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.