Verizon lights up perk-fueled 2-Gig Fios tier in New York
1-Gig broadband is quickly being swept aside as a top billboard speed as broadband service providers around the country push ahead with new multi-gigabit tiers.
Following recent moves by AT&T and Ziply Fiber, the latest to plunge into the multi-gig waters is Verizon. The telco has introduced a new symmetrical 2-Gigabit Fios tier in New York that starts at $119.99 per month (for customers on the "auto pay" program), along with a $99 set-up fee.
According to the fine print, the new Fios tier will deliver average wired download and upload speeds in the range of 1.5 Gbit/s to 2.3 Gbit/s.
Verizon is adorning the new 2-Gig tier with several perks, tacking on a $200 Verizon gift card, 12 months of Disney+, 12 months of AMC+, integrated whole home Wi-Fi (the package includes a router and extender that typically costs an additional $20 per month), a $20 monthly discount on unlimited wireless service, and 2 terabytes of cloud storage. Verizon is also offering a steep discount on the recently launched Stream TV Soundbar (for $99.99, $300 off the regular price).
The 2-Gig launch puts competitive pressure on other operators in the New York area, including Altice USA, Charter and RCN/Astound Broadband. Among that group, Altice USA is pushing ahead with an ambitious fiber-to-the-premises upgrade initiative in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey, and Charter recently announced that recent DOCSIS 4.0 lab tests generated speeds of greater than 8.5Gbit/s downstream and 6Gbit/s upstream.
Verizon, which added 51,000 Fios Internet subs in Q4 2021, is planning to expand the 2-Gig tier to additional Fios markets later this year and eventually cover the entire Fios footprint, a Verizon spokesperson said. That likely means that Comcast will soon be facing off with the faster Fios tier. Comcast has also conducted DOCSIS 4.0 trials and has a targeted, residential FTTP service called Gigabit Pro that delivers 3-Gig symmetrical speeds, but starts at almost $300 per month.
Multi-gig becoming the new norm
Verizon's initial multi-gig move in New York joins a growing list of similar launches around the country.
Among recent examples, AT&T launched symmetrical 2-Gig and 5-Gig residential and business broadband services to more than 70 US markets. AT&T's multi-gig tiers bundle in HBO Max and its ActiveArmor Internet security service.
Ziply Fiber, meanwhile, has lit up 2-Gig and 5-Gig speed tiers in parts of Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading
A version of this story first appeared on Light Reading.
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Launch of 2-Gig and 5-Gig FTTP tiers in 70-plus markets puts more pressure on cable ops to enhance their existing DOCSIS 3.1 network or accelerate their upgrade activity centered on the new DOCSIS 4.0 specs.
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