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Verizon To Pump $18B Into FiOS

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the and-where's-my-rocket-car? dept.

215

larytet writes, "LightReading reports that Verizon will invest $18B into FTTH. The company says its fiber-based service will become profitable after four years, and expects by then to have 7 million customers using FiOS for Internet access." For perspective, have a look at Bruce Kushnick's book $200 Billion Broadband Scandal. His site has a page detailing phone company promises of fiber since 1993. We have been paying for these undelivered promises for years. By now we should have 86 million homes wired with FTTH at 100 Mbits/sec.

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215 comments

Better late than never? (2, Insightful)

tdemark (512406) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228125)

We have been paying for these undelivered promises for years. By now we should have 86 million homes wired with FTTH at 100 Mbits/sec.

This goes so against my usual feelings on how big companies treat the general populace, but...

With all the companies that make huge promises but never actually delivering, I willing to let it slide when a company delivers something pretty close to the original promise, even if it is just a little late.

- Tony

Re:Better late than never? (2, Informative)

plague3106 (71849) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228237)

Well, I'm in the 'who cares' boat. My city is rolling FTTH RIGHT NOW. I'll be hooked up by next year, at the latest.

Re:Better late than never? (1)

chrismcdirty (677039) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228505)

My county has been rolling out FTTH for what seems like a year or so now. But, lately, it seems to have stalled. Maybe they're currently installing it in places I don't normally travel. But one thing is for sure: my neighborhood is really low on the list to get it :(

Re:Better late than never? (2, Interesting)

ZachPruckowski (918562) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228513)

That's not the point. The point is that at my house (or my parents' house, since I'm at college), we have dial-up, because there's no other option. It's not even 56k broadband, the max speed is 36.6k, and then there's all of AOL's overhead. Everyone should have broadband by now, even if it's only 256k

Re:Better late than never? (1)

brandor (714744) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228545)

I too am in the same situation. FTTP/H will be here next summer. Along with the WiMax testbed that's actually taking off nicely, we will be getting fiber! If you would have said this to me 2 years ago, I would have laughed in your face! For a very rural area, we're soon to be rolling in all the broadband we want! Wee!

Re:Better late than never? (2, Insightful)

kabocox (199019) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229345)

Well, I'm in the 'who cares' boat. My city is rolling FTTH RIGHT NOW. I'll be hooked up by next year, at the latest.

Grrr you are what's wrong. You are in the who cares boat because your city is getting fiber now? You should be in the I'm bloody pissed that its taken more than a decade for them to rollout fiber to my city! At this rate, it'll take 2-3 decades for most of the nation to be wired up to slow speed fiber. You are most likely going to get alot slower than 100 Mbits/sec up and down and will be thrilled with the service. I'll be a pissed old man when they finally wire up my neighborhood in 20-30 years at 10 Mbits/sec up and down when we should be getting 1,000-10,000 Mbits/sec up and down in the 20-30 years it'll take them to wire up here.

Re:Better late than never? (3, Insightful)

Secrity (742221) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228487)

The difference is that most of the companies that make huge undelivered promises are not regulated monopolies. When supposedly regulated telephone companies makes huge promises, ratepayers and taxpayers start giving concesssions and possibly paying for portions of those promises at the time that the promise is made.

Re:Better late than never? (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230055)

Exactly! This is why countries like Japan, Korea, et al. get their Gigabit connections for $20/month, and we get asynchronous crap for triple that.

Re:Better late than never? (2, Interesting)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228585)

... verizon isn't delivering ANYTHING close to their original promise. Uncapped, unadulterated 100mbit service is nothing like the port blocked, don't upload too much in a month POS they're currently providing. Sure, it's leaps and bounds above DSL... but that should not get them off the hook.

Re:Better late than never? (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229795)

Not that I outright reject your accusations, but other than blocking ports 80 and 25 do you have any reference for your claims? At all? I'm genuinely curious about Verizon's capping policy with their FiOS service, but I've read probably over a hundred reviews from customers and nobody has said anything about it.

=Smidge=

Re:Better late than never? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16230083)

I too would like to am interested in sources for your complaints. FiOS was recently setup in my area and I'm very close to switching from Comcast to Verizon. The only thing holding me back is the the FiOS service only includes the broadband but not the FiOS TV option so I'd be stuck with relying on Comcast for that. Once the FiOS TV is available, we figured to switch to cut our service bill from about $110 (Comcast - broadband and digital TV) to around $70 (Verizon FiOS broadband and TV). Other than the cost of Comcast, I don't have any major complaints with them so if Verizon won't match the quality, I may hold off switching. I'd appreciate any sources if you have them.

Jim

Re:Better late than never? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229471)

So having 7 million in 4 years when we should have 86 million now is "pretty close" and just a "little late"?

FiOS more real than many of those broken promises (5, Interesting)

EVil Lawyer (947367) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228149)

For perspective, have a look at Bruce Kushnick's book $200 Billion Broadband Scandal. His site has a page detailing phone company promises of fiber since 1993. We have been paying for these undelivered promises for years. By now we should have 86 million homes wired with FTTH at 100 Mbits/sec.

Fine, there have been plenty of broken promises from phone companies (and, I believe, cable providers, satellite providers, and others) over the years. 7 million homes also might be a little optimistic. But FiOS is really, exists in plenty of homes already, and is much more real than many of those other technologies were at the times the promises were made.

I'm in New York and have FiOS. It's a very nice service. Happily, in New York, the slowest speed tier is 10 down / 2 up, and it's quite affordable compared to cable modem service. I'm looking forward to the FiOS TV service, and the day I'll be completely rid of Time Warner (not that Verizon itself is such a wonderful company).

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228567)

Fine, there have been plenty of broken promises from phone companies (and, I believe, cable providers, satellite providers, and others) over the years. 7 million homes also might be a little optimistic.

Broken promises are one thing. Broken promises that you have been paying for are quite another. The phone companies have had extra charges tacked on to your phone bill for years to pay for the development of FTTH.

In legal circles, I believe that they call this 'fraud'.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

EVil Lawyer (947367) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229097)

In legal circles, I believe that they call this 'fraud'.

Not necessarily. Fraud requires that an individual or an organization makes a false representation about a fact or event, and does so intentionally. I would say that any losses are due to ill-advised initial agreements between the government and the telcos, that let the telcos tack on the extra charges without having to promise (in the legal sense) anything in return.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

mikelieman (35628) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228801)

Blocked Ports, and that little move where they pull out your copper connection to the street ( so that you're NEVER going to get DSL again... ) remind us that VZ is still as evil as they ever were.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

kabocox (199019) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229159)

I'm in New York and have FiOS. It's a very nice service. Happily, in New York, the slowest speed tier is 10 Mbits/sec down / 2 Mbits/sec up, and it's quite affordable compared to cable modem service. I'm looking forward to the FiOS TV service, and the day I'll be completely rid of Time Warner (not that Verizon itself is such a wonderful company).

Um, you are happy with 2 up when you should have 100 Mbits/sec up and and 10 Mbits/sec down when you should have 100 Mbits/sec down. I'll give my local the benefit of the doubt since I live in a rural state and there is little hope of every getting real highspeed internet. New York though should have real 100 Mbits/sec up/down at a min. Really, I'd want you guys to have 1,000 Mbits/sec up and down. I mean come on you are the one of the most densely populated states in the US if any state should be able to do it is should be NY. I could see some cities in CA, TX, FL having it, but those states the population is spread out over a far larger area. I'd really would hope our top 10-20 cities would all have atleast 100 Mbits/sec up and down. I'm on dial up at home and lucky to stay connected for 2 hours without having to reconnect. The options for broad band in my area would cost $60 per month that's more than I can afford.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

EVil Lawyer (947367) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229233)

My "happily" statement was in reference to the fact that in most non-New York locales, the lowest tier is 5 Mbits/sec down and 2 Mbits/sec up -- at the same price I'm paying for 10/2. So I'm happy to be getting twice the downstream rate for the same price.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (3, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229411)

Fine, there have been plenty of broken promises from phone companies (and, I believe, cable providers, satellite providers, and others) over the years. 7 million homes also might be a little optimistic. But FiOS is really, exists in plenty of homes already, and is much more real than many of those other technologies were at the times the promises were made.

Maybe you should read the above book. The number of homes with decent high speed internet in the US is pathetic. Compare, for example, the internet service in Sweden. It is faster, more reliable, lower cost, and each citizen paid much less than each American citizen has in government subsidies. They also have about the same population density. Sorry, but the US is falling behind the world, except in a small number of very urban locations. I'm happy you have good service, but don't mistake the situation in new York for most of the US. I've lived in three of the ten largest cities in the US and in each place I had a choice of a crappy cable service bundled with Cable TV I don't want or an incredibly expensive DSL line bundled with a phone service I don't want.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229653)

There are plenty of areas currently served by FiOS that aren't "very urban locations." Read. [wikipedia.org]

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229883)

There are plenty of areas currently served by FiOS that aren't "very urban locations." Read.

Almost every area they offer it is very urban and that offering is pretty sparse. It covers selected cities within less than half of US states. Sorry, but that is just pathetic by the standards of many other countries.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229805)

But FiOS is really, exists in plenty of homes already, and is much more real than many of those other technologies were at the times the promises were made.

I'm in New York and have FiOS. It's a very nice service. Happily, in New York, the slowest speed tier is 10 down / 2 up, and it's quite affordable compared to cable modem service.


Did you have cable modem service when it first started to roll out? 10/10 and it was cheap (~$30/mo). Once they have added subscribers and oversold their bandwidth the speeds dropped to 1.5/128k and prices soared above $60/mo.

Eventually, over the last few years, speeds have started to climb again but prices have held steady.

I have a good feeling that this is exactly what will happen with this service.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

EVil Lawyer (947367) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230005)

One difference between early cable modem service and the early implementation of FiOS service is that FiOS is being offered in speed tiers with prices matching the speed the customer desires. Early cable modem customers paid for "cable modem service" and weren't choosing their level of service based on speed. This made it very easy for cable modem providers to cut bandwidth as they needed. With FiOS customers paying for certain speed levels, it won't be easy for Verizon to reign in the bandwidth and then offer a "premium" service (offering the speeds that customers were originally gettign before the speed decrease) for more money, as Cable providers have.

Re:FiOS more real than many of those broken promis (1)

sponga (739683) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230181)

Time Warner has some killer deals especially 'The Triple Play' package for Cable, Phone and Broadband for $100 a month only. They recently just upgraded all their packages in the huge area of Southern California and the premium for $8 extra gets you 10/1; cable will be able to compete as I think for fiber is only to the curb in most places and still unable to get into most apartments(NY?).

Of course! (5, Insightful)

laughingcoyote (762272) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228159)

Well is this unexpected? They were begging for money and consideration at the time, but they were also lobbying. In effect, they say "Oh it'll be fine, you'll see, watch what we'll give you!" Of course, since the promises weren't written into the law as a mandate, with real consequences if they went unfulfilled, what they gave us, predictably, was as little as they could get away with for as much as they could charge.

Now, in addition to tax revenue and right-of-ways, they want us to give up net neutrality. "Oh, but look what we'll give you!" I imagine they'll do just as well as last time.

I use Verizon FiOS (1)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229105)

It's noticeably better than their DSL but if they need to dismantle core Net principles like network neutrality in order to "incentivize" FiOS then they can bite my bum.

Re:Of course! (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229255)

Of course, since the promises weren't written into the law as a mandate, with real consequences if they went unfulfilled,
I'm a big believer in putting everything that needs to be said into the text of a law.

So why did they wait so long? Profitable in 4 years, but they waited 13.

Maybe thats how long it took their old equipment to depreciate. (ya know, write the costs off for tax purposes)

really dangerous for me.. (1)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228169)

between home and work- both with comcast pro connections
pings are pretty sweet,

18ms for the same roads that take me 20 miles to drive.

it's still not enough bandwidth for me to access my files live, I use synchronization software to keep my
'active' documents in place at both ends.. if I could have that increase in speed and keep my ping times, I'd likely loose the synchronizer and work off all my files from my home setup..

The problem then is, I don't have my 'other location' backup when I pull a boner... right now if I overwrite the wrong file, I kill my VPN (which kills my sync software) and grab the original from the other location

Verizon, please- don't bring this to me- I'll lose my backups! I am that lazy!
 

Re:really dangerous for me.. (1)

machx0r (780680) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229529)

18ms for the same roads that take me 20 miles to drive.

20 miles in 18ms (4 million mph) is illegal in the US.

And this is why subsidies are bad (4, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228181)

Subsidies are frequently abused and allocated for all of the wrong reasons. They skew the market, create a new base of lobbyists and generally increase the scope of government intrusion. We wouldn't have people like Ted Stevens be the norm in Congress if the American people could bring themselves to follow what's in the Constitution, and subsidizing business isn't one of the enumerated powers of Congress. If it were a dry, boring job that made them more like "law book janitors" than power brokers, most problems would go away within an election cycle.

But no, we just need to change where and how the government gives away money, not whether or not the government should be involved at all.

Re:And this is why subsidies are bad (1)

SwedishChef (69313) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229569)

Every now and then I come across a posting on Slashdot that makes me want to stand up and salute. So many here just want everything given to them NOW and they think a government agency is the best bet. It's refreshing to see someone stand up for what this country used to be about.

The Grant County Public Utility District (GCPUD) - a public municipality under Washington State law - decided to do FTTH in 1999 but had secret contracts subsidizing certain favored service providers (they are prohibited from dealing with end-users by the legislation that let 'em into telecom) and stupidly sent internal emails around explaining to each other explaining how they were going to do it (these emails are available to the public under public disclosure laws in WA). Then they finagled things to get the money from their sales of tax-free municipal bonds to do the fiber installation but ignored the fact that the bond money would be used for private business (ISPs) on that fiber. The IRS hasn't ignored it though.

If that weren't enough they actually created a subsidiary "non-profit corporation" that is wholly owned by 17 PUDs in the State and use that to compete with the service providers that survived all the other crap.

The GCPUD now faces numerous claims under RICO and Federal Anti-Trust statutes, plus they will be sued by their bond-holders once the IRS requires them to restate their income from 2000 onwards.

And oh ya... they spent $30million for generators to jump onto the bandwagon of screwing Californians for their power bills but didn't get 'em into service before FERC put a cap on the prices of power. So they have generators that can generate electricity for $150/mw in a market where the price cap is under $50/mw. AND... California is suing them over the power they sold (generated by their two dams on the Columbia River - for which they are trying to renew licenses) at inflated prices before the cap.

They are into FTTH for over $100 million (in a County with about 60,000 people) and only one-third done.

Only Young South Koreans need 100MB/sec (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228183)

Oh wait, South Koreans of all ages HAVE HAD this kind of speed for some time now, at least in some big cities.

It's about time Americans, particularly those in greenfield and other relatively-cheap-to-wire places, had affordable access to those kinds of speeds.

If this isn't the first post blame it on my oh-so-slow sub-100MB/sec connection.

Re:Only Young South Koreans need 100MB/sec (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228547)

No, this is a common fallacy. Sure you see advertisements for 100mbit connections in S Korea, but you dont get a real 100mbit connection. What you get is the same as a normal internet connection that is offered here by Comcast/Roadrunner. Trust me, I lived there - just moved back 3 months ago. Its a gimmick so S Korea can call themselves the most connected country in the world.

Re:Only Young South Koreans need 100MB/sec (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228929)

Oh wait, South Koreans of all ages HAVE HAD this kind of speed for some time now

Yes, but only the old people use it.

Actual Dollar Amount $23b (4, Informative)

cdrudge (68377) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228201)

According to this article [fortwayne.com] in my local paper, Verizon is planning on spending nearly $23b on FiOS and that's for about 1/2 their network. The $18b figure mentioned in the summary comes from discounting the $5b in projected savings from not having to maintain the aging copper physical plant. The linked to article sort of mentions this, but it's not real clear.

A couple friends have Fios (0)

wiredog (43288) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228227)

They love it. Faster than cable or DSL.

As far asw having 86 million people wired by now, have you not heard of the last mile problem. Laying the cable costs money. And takes time. After the dot bomb the telcos had to retrench for a few years until the market improved a bit.

Re:A couple friends have Fios (2, Informative)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228313)

As far asw having 86 million people wired by now, have you not heard of the last mile problem. Laying the cable costs money. And takes time. After the dot bomb the telcos had to retrench for a few years until the market improved a bit.

The dot-com collapse was a big reason why there was a big delay in getting broadband to metropolitan areas across the USA. It's only within the last three years that landline broadband has been widely available in most larger cities across the USA. Most AT&T customers now have at least access to DSL broadband, and the cable companies have made broadband available to almost everyone nowadays.

Re:A couple friends have Fios (2, Interesting)

kabocox (199019) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229461)

The dot-com collapse was a big reason why there was a big delay in getting broadband to metropolitan areas across the USA. It's only within the last three years that landline broadband has been widely available in most larger cities across the USA. Most AT&T customers now have at least access to DSL broadband, and the cable companies have made broadband available to almost everyone nowadays.

Are you kidding me? Are you freaking kidding me? Those are communications companies and not dot-bomb companies. If anything we should have had a faster rollout of telecommunications equipment because the labor and supplies would have been a bit cheaper without the dot-com folks around. I hated the dot-com era and allowing the telecomms to use the dot-com collapse as an excuse for something that they should have had rolled out before the dot-com era really started is a huge cop out. In some respects you can blame the dot-com collapse on the telecoms for not having the nation wired up with fiber at 100 Mbits/sec up and down in the mid 90s! The dot-com era was from the mid to late 90s. The telecoms should have been finishing up wiring the country with fiber before the dot-com era really picked up!

Re:A couple friends have Fios (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228391)

Which means they can charge more for it. You can get dial up for $10 a month. But then they came up with DSL/Cable, which is really fast, so they charge you $30+ per month. Oh Now they have Fibre Optic, which is even faster, so they can start charging people $70 per month for internet access. It's the same with Cable TV. You can get free over the air, or you can get analog cable for $25 a month. But now they come out with digital cable, which will cost you $50 a month. Oh wait, now we have HD Cable, which costs $70 a month. I realize that you don't have to upgrade to the services you don't need, and you can still use dial up and over the air TV if you want, but the truth is that the service providers love this stuff, because they stand to make tons of money off stuff that people don't really need, but that they can be convinced they need. I know people who complian they don't have enough money for groceries, yet their spending $200 on Cable+Internet+CellPhone every month.

Re:A couple friends have Fios (1)

SirTalon42 (751509) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229261)

Actually the FiOS 10/2 service in my area costs slightly less than Comcast's much slower 6/.5. Also all new products/services that are 'superior' to old ones start out costing more. Eventually the prices drop as new products/services come out, this is nothing new.

Believe it when you see it (2, Interesting)

qwertphobia (825473) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228243)

I'll believe it when I see it. I have Verizon phone service, and I live in a well-populated area, but I cannot get DSL yet. It turns out that some of my local loop is running over copper, and the rest is running over fiber. I cannot get DSL because of the fiber but I also cannot get FIOS because of the copper. So I''ve been waiting, but I might just have to bite the bullet and get Comcast...

Re:Believe it when you see it (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228491)

I could not get Verizon DSL in my town, but it was the first in my area to get FiOS. I now have 30Mbit down and 2Mbit up with 5 static IPs. It's also infinitely more stable than my Comcast was.

Don't give up hope.

at least one in ponying up (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228251)

Well, it looks like at least one of the telcos is making an attempt to deliver on their promise (albeit a little late). When/if a formal investigation is launched into the whole "fiber to the home" scandal, Verizon will have something to hold up in their defense.

I'll take two. (4, Interesting)

oc255 (218044) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228271)

I've been hitting the submit button on the "Can I get FiOS?" site in Northern Virginia since I heard about it in 2004. So far, all I've gotten is a web redirect to their DSL offerings.

Speaking of DSL, I talked to Speakeasy (my dsl provider) and asked them if they'd ever be able to offer their open hosting policies over FiOS. Speakeasy said no because FiOS is regulated differently than your POTS lines. So this really put a damper on things because I won't get port 80 etc over blazing optics. Unless they strike a deal (unlikely?) or an act of congress happens (lobbying?). I'd love to know exactly why fiber is treated differently.

Re:I'll take two. (3, Interesting)

curlynoodle (1004465) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229843)

FiOS is an "Information Service", where as POTS is still a "Telecommunication Service". I think this is the distinction.

What to do with 100 Mbps connxn ? (1)

in2mind (988476) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228289)

What exactly does one do with a 100 Mbps FTTH connection other than downloading a 700 MB DivX movie in 1 sec @ 12500 MB/sec ? p.s :Did I get the no's right?

Re:What to do with 100 Mbps connxn ? (1)

oc255 (218044) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228599)

Just a few ideas. Centralized TiVO. Commercial game renting. Sync gentoo quick, heck have prebuilt images for your exact hardware ready. Rent apps over Citrix?

Re:What to do with 100 Mbps connxn ? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228689)

On a 100Mbps connection (12.5MBps) you would download a 700MB movie in 56 seconds. But to download an entire DVD, it would take more than five minutes. Over 100Mbps you can watch good quality live streams smoothly. Here in Estonia, some ISPs provide 15Mbps for users who want digital television. While it is smooth most of the time, it blurs when watching really fast action (for example some sports). On a 100Mbps connection I could receive full uncompressed frames with no problems.

No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228697)

More like 70 seconds at 10 MB/s if conditions are optimal. Still beats 56K though. ;)

Re:What to do with 100 Mbps connxn ? (1)

cloudmaster (10662) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229149)

little b is bits, big B is bytes - the bigger one is the bigger unit (100Mbps is about 12MB/s). To get your 700MB file, you'll be pulling down 5600 bits plus overhead, and it'll take a little over 1 minute on a fully saturated link. Real world, you'll be waiting a little longer.

I'm a little surprised by Verizon (4, Insightful)

chaffed (672859) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228369)

I'm surprised by Verizon because you don't need a Verizon PC to use FIOS. Imagine that! Those clever engineers figured out a way to make a service profitable without proprietary lock in. Gee they are great!

Okay I do have a chip on my shoulder when it comes to Verizon.

Now imagine if Verizon FIOS was operated like Verizon Wireless.

You would be required to sign a 2 year contract and pay $1000 for a PC that can barely take advantage of the basic features of the service. If you wanted something that could give you the full experience that would be a 2 year contract plus $2000 for equipment.

All the while the PC they sold you would be locked to FIOS and have many features disabled. Some features I can imagine being disabled would be File Transfers via FTP or any standard protocol. You would be required to use their application at a fee for every transfer.

You would be locked out of using other media services like Apple, Yahoo or audiable.

Your information services would be limited to their partners, probably fox news...

Finally they would happily hand over your personal information to those willing to pay or a government with no probable cause or a warrant.

This all sounds very familiar now that I write this all... Net Neutrality anyone? or a lack there of...

Re:I'm a little surprised by Verizon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229285)

Verizon engineers are very rarely clever. Infact, your entire premise is wrong. They are using proprietary hardware, only they aren't selling it to you. The demarc box for the fiber is owned by Verizon, you don't pay for it, but you don't own it either. You are locked in to using Verizon FiOS service for voice, data, and video, you can't use FiOS to watch DirectTV or iTunes videos, or to get faster internet through Brighhouse. Moreover their DVR boxes, which are locked to their video service, also have features disabled to keep their media providers happy (think DRM).

The only "clever" thing being done is putting standardized interfaces on that demarc box, such as coaxial ports and ethernet ports, and that is only because they couldn't justify the cost of re-wiring your entire house on top of the cost of re-wiring your entire street, which they are already paying for.

Re:I'm a little surprised by Verizon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229327)

Of course, this doesn't take into account the fact that FIOS installers strip out the copper lines when they do an install, basically removing all ability for you to easily switch to another provider. They don't need to sell you a 'Verizon' PC, they in essence own your phone service once you become a FIOS customer.

Although this can be avoided, Namely if the customer asks an installer to leave the copper /during/ the install they actually have too.

Re:I'm a little surprised by Verizon (1)

FellowConspirator (882908) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229545)

To be fair, the FiOS terms of service not only forbid you from running a web server on your machine (they even block port 80), but and "server-type application" (whether it uses the Internet connection or not). That would include remote desktop, X11, P2P software, game servers (no Unreal Tournament with your friends), SlingBox, et cetera.

Sure, they probably are pretty lax on enforcing it, but the typical use for 3/4 of their customers will include at least one "server" application of some sort in the home, whether the person realizes or not that it can accept an inbound network connection. That just gives them leverage to make you pay extra later or cancel your service without notice.

Have no fear! (4, Funny)

rlp (11898) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228375)

Congress is actively dealing with this right now! You won't get fiber to your house, but you will get a larger series of tubes. And your representative will mail you your very own Internet.

It's about f-in time (3, Insightful)

KalElOfJorEl (998741) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228377)

That book about the scandal sheds a lot of light of just how screwed over customers have been the past decade+. If anything Verizon has a moral obligation to start something like this from the fact that their customers have been paying extra for it for years and the fact that America is getting its ass kicked in regards to infrastructure compared to some countries in Europe and Japan. China is also planning on sinking billions into its infrastructure as well, so it's about time one of these money whoring telecoms stop the douchebaggery and start fucking doing something instead of syphoning capital out of its customers for service in which the cost doesn't justify the performance. Maybe this will trigger Comcast, ATT, Qwest and others to stop their stupid fucking complacency and start doing something to improve this companies infrastructure instead of holding their monopolies and using the legal system to force out municipally owned service [windley.com].

Then again, I've never associated telecoms with ever doing anything moral, intelligent or in the best interest of the consumer.

Re:It's about f-in time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229945)

Well, here in Pittsburgh, FIOS has been available all *around* the city for some time. But due to the fact that the city government wants to figure out how to wring every tax dime out of people buying this service, they haven't allowed them to turn it on citywide yet. You can see the fiber on the poles sitting in front of houses, just waiting to be used...

So, it's not always the telcos fault.

Malware at 10 times the Speed... (2, Insightful)

bstory (89087) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228385)

Am I the only one that's wondering if this much bandwidth for the average home user is a good idea? Perhaps it's time to tie things like egress filters and packet shapers to the new bandwidth to prevent threats from spreading that much faster?

Re:Malware at 10 times the Speed... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229093)

Not so much malware, as the spam that is a side-effect of malware. With 100Mb/s of upstream bandwidth a few zombies could easily overwhelm a lot of individual and small-business mail servers. They could also be used for very effective DDoS attacks.

Re:Malware at 10 times the Speed... (1)

Jimmy King (828214) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230013)

Nope, you're not the only one wondering that. I've been wondering that ever since home users started being able to easily get bandwidth comparable to a t-1 (in theory) for $50/month or less. The problem is I haven't devised a plan to take it away from everyone else in the world without losing it myself yet.

The difference is it's already here (2, Interesting)

cmorriss (471077) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228393)

Yes, lots of other phone companies have made promises about bringing FTTH utopia, however the difference is that Verizon is already doing it. They've been rolling it out in several places around the northeast for a while now.

Here's a blog with lots of details on how the installation is done: http://www.bricklin.com/fiosinstall.htm [bricklin.com].

Re:The difference is it's already here (1)

EVil Lawyer (947367) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228707)

Not just the northeast. FiOS is currently available in parts of California, Florida, Maryland, Indiana, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.

200 billion, eh? (1)

metaltoad (954564) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228477)

Why is it both of the articles on the 200 billion dollar government investment look like scam sites? The first one is actually selling some cheesy "book" and asking for donations through PayPal. The second one isn't a real news article either, just a collection of quotes. Smells like conspiracy theory to me. Is there no better source for this information?

FIOS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228569)

I have spent a lot of time investigating this situation the biggest problem they seem to have with rollouts is that it
A) needs to be deployed in a whole new way meaning that they can only add fios to existing fios to roll out more it has to create like a spidersweb (completely seperate networks)

B) They cannot really deploy it in apartment complexes yet (they havent figured out how to get it to run in big buildings) which is why you have less rollout in big cities than you'd expect

A couple of comments about those who have already posted (south korea has the new networks faster for the same reason europe is way ahead in cellphone tech. america is too big. American companies spend so much and so long getting the last thing to everyone they cant afford to get the new stuff there yet. FIOS is in certain cities but since the country is too big you think its nowhere because its not where you are

ping time does not indicate total transfer speed just the delay of transfer. Unless you are sending thousands of different small files you won't notice the difference between 20ms and 100ms considering a movie missing 2 frames (about 80 ms) isnt apparent to most people.

and for the phone company / government conspiracists : Why would a phone company not roll out a product this remarkable as soon as possible? Companies dont exist to "be evil" they exist to make money, delivering remarkable products is a whole lot easier way to make money than to beg for it off the gov.

BabyBells (1)

MassiveForces (991813) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228607)

What do you guys say on cutting the companies up a little more and letting them grow big by themselves? Certainly, small companies wouldn't be able to pocket that much cash individually or collaborate with so many other small companies to pocket it collectively. And one that happened to take the market by storm would proabably be like an underdog that made it big (say like AMD, ATI) and have a policy of innovation and staying ahead of the pack to win. What would be the disadvantage in having say 20 smaller companies instead of giants like Verizone?

Re:BabyBells (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229069)

You do realize they did that and verizon was what arose out of the ashes?? Verizon is the eventual merger of at least a dozen "baby bells"

Apparently breaking up huge companies really works.

Verizon Gets It (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228609)

Unfortunately some companies, such as AT&T and BellSouth (which are becoming the same soon) don't get it. They don't seem to realize that the switch to fiber will be inevitable, and they are currently falling behind in this race for speed. In its current carnation, ADSL is not capable of handling Voice, Internet, and TV service, and while I have read that they have plans to implement VDSL, it will have its limits as well. It is good to see a huge company such as Verizon understand that they will need to make a huge investment, even though they have a control over certain markets and aren't really being forced to upgrade. In my area, SureWest [surewest.com] has been running fiber in many parts of Sacramento, and they already offer 100Mbps fiber directly to customers houses. The CEO has admitted it will cost them a lot of money, and will be a slow upgade, but they have already been successful [cisco.com] in their attempts. If a relatively small company like SureWest can compete in a market that has been controlled by AT&T and Comcast, then I'm sure it is possible in many other big cities around the United States. I have their service, and one thing that I find amazing is they can upgade to 1Gbps to their customers relatively easy by switching out line cards in their 4500 Cisco routers when it becomes necessary to keep up with or get ahead of the competition. The same can be done by switching to 10Gbps uplink from 4500 series to 6500 series routers that are connecting neighborhoods to their backbone. Now that is building for the future.

Re:Verizon Gets It (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16230133)

Oops. Although they do routing, these are 4500/6500 series Layer 3 switches, not routers.

Is this really... (1)

Fx.Dr (915071) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228613)

...a company we want to go to for 'net connectivity? If I wanted to deal with dropped connections and insane overage charges I'd warp back to '96 and dial-in to AOL.

About time... glad I got it. (2, Interesting)

strredwolf (532) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228623)

Yep, they're slowly rolling it out, replacing the old copper cable. Plus, they're offering such a sweet deal with Internet and TV over the fiber: $35 for 5mbit up/2mbit down (I sometimes hit 6mbit down, strangely enough). $52 for basic 180 channel digital TV (only 18 channels analog, so you need a set top box or DVR), a STB in one room, a two-tuner DVR in another.

It is easy to profit when you don't have to share (1)

ravenwing_np (22379) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228675)

Currently, Verizon is required by law to allow other ISPs to provide service over thier DSL lines. I'm currently paying slightly more for a third party to provide better "service" as in static IP and easy to reach tech support. With fiber, my only choice is Verizon. If I want a static IP, I need to pay the Business DSL priceses.

Yeah, profit in four years should be easy for them.

Major FTTH lanched 1G EUR investment in France (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228725)

Here in France most of broadband is DSL oriented. For 29.99 you get on a DSL : 25Mb/s, digital TV (more than 100 chans), unlimited call to european land line (and most majour countries), on-demand video, PVR-like features, ... nothing surprising anymore.

But since year 2000, some small ISP have lanched FTTH in Paris 15th district (Citéfibre http://www.citefibre.com/ [citefibre.com] 59/month for 30Mb/s symetrical, unlimited call to any france landline , digital TV) or other cities (like Pau see http://eco.agglo-pau.fr/Initiatives/PBC/presentati on/presentation1.htm [agglo-pau.fr]) or even FTTB (on Paris area, see Erenis http://www.erenis.fr/ [erenis.fr] )...

Obviously some would says that Japan, Korea or Taiwan are still leading on FTTH ;-) Right, ...

But this september, Free (Iliad Group registered on Euronext as ILD) the #2 on broadband market (#1 is FranceTelecom/Orange) has announed they will migrate their DSL customer to FTTH offer. Same price (29.99) for 100Mb/s symetrical bandwidth on a point to point full fiber infrastructure, services anticipated are : multi-tv-set full HD service (full HD sports show Rolland Garros or Tour de France will be hits next year !) and WiFi based mobile VoIP (your modem will become a public hotspot for any other subscriber roaming) ...

This means a 1G$ (1 billion euro) of investment on 6 years (mostly using cashmoney they got). The migration of DSL customer will start begin of next year by Paris and some other big surrounding cities and will then follow on any other disctrict where Free got more thant 15% of the DSL market.

For more details, please see :
http://www.journaldunet.com/0609/060911-free.shtml [journaldunet.com]
(In French, so babelfish can be your friend)

Hmph... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228741)

We have been paying for these undelivered promises for years. By now we should have 86 million homes wired with FTTH at 100 Mbits/sec.


Even in the event that we get it, the modern atmosphere is so rife with corporate control that we won't be allowed to *use* it. I have FiOS at my house, I'm paying for 5 static IPs (which they refer to as a "business account"), and even with that set up you're not allowed to run any kind of server at all according to their ToS.

Even if we've got all this bandwidth, what's the fucking point if we're not allowed to use it as we wish?

Public privatization (3, Interesting)

Rinisari (521266) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228757)

Dear lazyweb,

What say you to publically owned, but privately serviced network infrastructure? For example, a city, town, or borough pays to have its own network system (cable, dsl, ftth, whatever) installed, and then has an outside company (Adelphia, Comcast, Verizon, etc.) provide the bandwidth and support. The city retains control of the lines, so in the event the denizens of the city are unhappy with the provider company, they could vote to terminate (or simply not renew) the contract with the company and seek other bids for service.

Re:Public privatization (1)

popsicle67 (929681) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229783)

This is easy to answer. Nobody has to bid to provide service.That is why your plan will fail. If you alter some ccompany's franchise agreement to stipulate servicing the municipal lines as a condition for allowing access to the locallity then you might get what your advocating, but most likely you will get a half finished project that will be another failed local government project. I just do nt ge where people think that any communications company will do the right thing for any reason other than the certain prospect of losing their incorporation and being sold piecemeal at a surplus auction.

bad writeup! FTTH = fiber to the home (3, Informative)

bodrell (665409) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228767)

Come on! Define FTTH before you use it twice in a writeup. It's bad enough trying to decipher ridiculous acronyms in the comments, but in the stories themselves? Bah.

Although I may have been successful in my deciphering, I believe FTTH is not a common acronym that most people (even on /.) have heard about. And no, I shouldn't have to chase a wikipedia link to figure it out. At least the submitter didn't use the much worse acronym FTTP, fiber to the premises (which I would have thought a misspelling of FTP).

Re:bad writeup! FTTH = fiber to the home (1)

saboola (655522) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229381)

I googled FTTH:

Fiber to the Home Council Join the FTTH Council in Las Vegas for what promises to be the ... mark is provided to service providers who meet the FTTH Council's requirements for ... www.ftthcouncil.org/ - 26k - Cached - Similar pages

It took all of three seconds to do, and less then I imagine five calories burned. Get over it.

Re:bad writeup! FTTH = fiber to the home (1)

bodrell (665409) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230075)

I googled FTTH:

Why would you do that when you could have clicked on the Wikipedia link? The point was that a headline is supposed to be self-explanatory. It's supposed to tell me what the story is about, so I can decide if I want more info. When I have to do background research to figure out what the hell the headline / summary means, it's a bad summary. And just because fiber optic interest groups use the acronym doesn't mean it's commonly known. Even AJAX [slashdot.org] got an explanation in early /. stories, back before it was ubiquitous. Fiber-to-the-home shouldn't be an exception to that general stylistic rule.

Re:bad writeup! FTTH = fiber to the home (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229627)

FTTP is the official acronym used by Verizon. Your opinions on it aside, they do get to determine what to call their own technology.

Promises fail when governments intefere (0)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16228777)

Sorry, the phone companies are only partly to blame.

All these wonderful advances in connectivity get hamstrung more by regulation than anything else.

Going to build high speed internet, well your going to have to install in Councilman Payoff's district too.

or for disadvanataged group #88

or for the children

or for the schools.

In otherwords, anything that keeps politicians in their jobs, their friends and family employed, will be done before the people actually desiring the service, the ones the company really wants to sell it to, get the service.

Don't buy from the phone company then! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16228867)

If you're an idiot, and have been buying stuff from the phone company, and you complain about the wait, you'd think you would have LEARNED something in the past 13 years.

If you don't like it, why don't you bury your own fiber and build your own network?
You're good at whining. And who cares what some book says. The author had enough time to write a book, why isn't he out there solving the problem instead of complaining about it?

You must be a liberal. No solution, just a bag of hot air.

Re:Don't buy from the phone company then! (2, Funny)

dloose (900754) | more than 7 years ago | (#16230067)

Good idea. I'm gonna get off my lazy, liberal ass and start laying some damn fiber! I'll start by renting a backhoe so I can dig up my front lawn. Maybe I can save some money on that if my neighbors chip in. Hell, maybe I can get the whole city to pitch in a little bit to buy the fiber in bulk. We'll need some organized way to collect the money. Maybe the city can collect it once per year from every citizen -- that's a good idea. But if I'm gonna do the whole city, I'll need more than 1 backhoe. That means I'll need some qualified backhoe operators. I'll probably need to get some permits to dig up the roads and such too.

Man, this is a lot of work. Maybe instead of giving me the money the city can give it to some large conglomeration of people whose job it is to do this sort of thing. I know there are a few companies out there. Anyway, the government can give them a bunch of money -- probably in the billions -- to build up the infrastructure, and we'll be all set.

I'm so happy you spurred me into action. Things are gonna change! I can feel it!

Seriously though, you must be a conservative. You don't like books and big companies are never wrong.

Availability (1)

Moqui (940533) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229239)

Anyone working for Verizon able to confirm any of the rollout plans for the Northern VA area? Seems that they are hyping FiOS all over the place (events, mailings, etc) but I still get the "We're sorry, but that service isn't quite yet available in your area -- please leave us your email for a notice when it is". This has been going on for close to a year now. Hook us up! Let us know when we can get the service :)

Re:Availability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16229889)

When you see a bunch of contract workers digging trenches through your front yard, you will be eligible for service in a few months. This isn't like DSL where they just had to install equipment at the CO, they literally will have to lay cable down your street. From what I've heard, you won't be able to miss it when it happens. Other signs that FiOS is coming to your area include power and cable outages, and ruptured gas and/or water lines.

Re:Availability (1)

Moqui (940533) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229993)

Ok, good. Means it must be right around the corner, because we have power outages and DSL service outages weekly now ;)

Chance for TRUTH in up/down speeds (3, Insightful)

Aqualung812 (959532) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229305)

With everyone putting in 100MB connections, now would be a great time to have FAIR access to the Internet. Here are a few ideas:

1. Give me TRUE, dedicated bandwidth at a low level. I'm talking like 768k down, 384k up that is MINE. It can't be squashed, and I don't get nasty letters for using 768k down 24/7/365. You really are not giving everyone 30mb down / 8 mb up, at least not all the time. Own up to it and let us know what is allowed JUST FOR US.

2. Show me my burst level. I might have 768k that is MINE, but I might be able to get 30MB down when everyone else isn't as busy.

3. Offer unlimited access within the switch (neighborhood). If I have a 100MB pipe to my house, and my next door neighboor is on FTTP, then allow me to talk at 100MB. I understand lowering it once you hit a trunked connection, but allowing full speed COSTS THE ISP NOTHING, and has a HUGE gain. My buddy might have 30MB from Comcast, but if I tell him that if he switches to ISP A he we can talk at 100MB, I'm sure he would switch.

Is it thanks to the rising price of copper? (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229817)

Is it thanks to the rising price of copper that the US will finally get FTTH?
Will Verizon rip out any easy-removed copper wires and sell it to make $.

Or is it because you can run more spying equipment via FTTH? ;)

$180 for 15Mb??? (1)

IdleTime (561841) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229909)

I just looked at Verizons page and found that they charge you $180 for 15Mb!

With a pricing like that, they can stuff FiOS where the the bad smell comes from!

Re:$180 for 15Mb??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16230233)

You must be smokin' some crack there, bra. Check it. [verizon.com]

The sad part (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 7 years ago | (#16229913)

Is that it is _still_ Verizon. They've contacted me a few times for FIOS access, but it will be a tough sell since I know how their support functions. I kicked Verizon out of my home a few years ago (Speakeasy DSL + VOIP) and have been nothing but happy since. Yeah, so I don't have 15Mb down and 2Mb up, but my 6Mb/768kb is doing just fine. Besides, I still love Speakeasy for their support of other Operating systems.

Verizon couldn't offer me anything that I'd want from them.

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