Verizon's Strigl Says Communications Industry Is Key Force Driving Progress, Commerce and Lifestyles

LAS VEGAS - The communications industry is a vital force in the nation's progress, and is positioned to deliver even more innovation, more services, and more safety and security, said Denny Strigl, Verizon's president and chief operating officer, in a keynote address Wednesday (June 18) at the NXTcomm trade show here.

With growth occurring everywhere in network technology, "We think that giving customers the tools to manage their digital lives - anytime, anywhere, on any device - may be the most powerful growth opportunity of all," Strigl said.

Reviewing technologies that support video and data, wired and wireless transport, Strigl cited Verizon's FiOS Internet and FiOS TV services, along with the company's advanced wireless services, as examples of the industry's progress. 

After announcing that Verizon next week will offer all of its FiOS Internet customers download speeds of 50 megabits per second (Mbps) with 20 Mbps upstream, Strigl looked forward:  "We've already had trials of the 100-megabit home, which will be a reality faster than anybody thinks," he said.  "We're also pushing the envelope on the speed of the Internet backbone - with 40-gigabit- per-second speeds a reality today and 100 gigabits in sight.

"These speeds are transforming global businesses the same way fiber is transforming broadband to the home," he said.  "New services like virtual reality videoconferencing and on-demand software are helping multinational companies save energy, improve efficiency and manage their global workforce - and there is much more on the way."

Reinforcing the global nature of modern networking, Verizon Business announced Wednesday that it is expanding and strengthening its unified communications and collaboration services to help multinational companies, faced with dramatically rising travel costs, collaborate better and improve their business processes. Unified communications uses Internet protocol networks to integrate voice, data and video communications and devices, allowing for more effective and efficient communications.

[Note: For more details on the 50Mbps and unified communications announcements, see separate news releases at http://newscenter2.verizon.com/press-releases/verizon/2008/verizon-extends.html and http://newscenter2.verizon.com/press-releases/verizon/2008/verizon-business-makes.html, respectively.]

Strigl also noted that America leads the world in the number of broadband connections and in choice and competition for broadband services.  Furthermore, Verizon's fiber-optic deployment is progressing faster, passing twice as many homes with more fiber customers than exist in all of Europe.

In wireless, too, the U.S. is leading other countries, with more minutes, lower prices and more choice of providers.  

"What the U.S. communications industry has achieved in deploying broadband and mobile networks is tremendous," Strigl said.  "Unlike most other nations, we've done this not through industrial policy but through private investment. Our industry has grown, delivering innovation that makes a difference in the lives of our customers. The benefits have rippled through the entire economy and up and down the whole supply chain - creating millions of high-tech jobs and billions of dollars in value.

'"More' is what our industry is delivering to customers and America," Strigl said. '"More' is what Verizon is going to bring to the marketplace this year, next year and every year after that.  And 'more' is what broadband and mobile technologies will mean to society as we enter the next phase of the digital revolution."

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 more than 67 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 employed a diverse workforce of approximately 232,000 as of the end of the first quarter 2008 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of $93.5 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.