With cable services, satellites and broadband getting expensive day by day and with most consumers spending above $100 every month on such services, the conditions were just right for Verizon to launch its FiOS services completely changing the way cable services operate.
The advent of Verizon’s FiOS services marked a technological innovation in the industry when it bundled the three major utilities – home phone, cable television and broadband – in one package. But the clincher came when they announced to provide all three services through one fiber optic cable.
Now consumers have the benefit of all the three services bundled together from one service provider instead of crossing multiple cheques for different service providers every month. And since the services come on a single optical cable the overall performance of these services is also much higher then what the individual companies are providing; we all know that optical wires have almost zero signal loss as the distance from the transmission stations increase in stark contrast to regular wires.
So what exactly is Verizon FiOS providing to consumers? The package has the following specification in areas where it operates:
- High speed internet, i.e. 5mbps upload and 20mbps download with television connectivity via internet dongle
- More than 500 television channels which includes 180 digital music channels and more than 95 1080i HDTV channels
- 10,000 video on demand titles
- A standard analog telephone line backed with battery life for power failure
- 9 free email accounts
- Host of value added services
The service at the moment is available at only selected locations around the United States, i.e. Philadelphia, Delaware and New Jersey. Cable Television is one of the most profitable businesses anywhere and every state has its own cable providers, which may have a monopoly. Thus, obtaining license is not easy. However, with the growing demand in FiOSit is very likely that the service will spread all across the US if not by Verizon then other service providers.
At the moment though there are bundled services also being provided by cable services like AT&T and Comcast with the option of one single monthly billing. However, none provide the host of value added services that Verizon FiOS does. And, of course, who can ignore the fact that a single optical cable is used for multiple utilities!
Among the chief value added services is the FiOS Interactive Media Guide (IMG). The FiOSIMG is a unique innovation to Verizon’s Cable Television, which has the potential to transform the way users experience television.
You are all well aware of how tedious it can get to search for channels on the television guide that comes with your cable. There are thousands of programs to swift through and even after a keyword has been typed users are often not able to get the desired media files. Well, with IMG all this is history because through this software users have the ability to filter search results to get a broad range of related programs or a simple program through a keyword search.
So now instead of pressing those colored buttons to drag down annoying menus as on other cable providers you can simply use an IMG enabled device to get incredibly fast search results.
Moreover the search interface is designed to look like an internet search engine thus making it easy to navigate for not so tech savvy people, kids and the elderly who can even use the internet dongle service easily.
Before immediately shifting to a Verizon FiOS after reading this article think about your usage patterns first. If you are satisfied with your current service providers then changing toVerizon might cost you a little extra. The service comes at $160 per month and if the added value of high speed internet service and extra channels with a host of other services is not something that grabs your attention, then you should think twice before switching.
For instance, those who are satisfied using a Time Warner cable network it would be good idea to get the broadband services of Comcast since they are both part of the same company. In the end, it all comes down to your usage, if you are an average household user who does not care much for the internet besides checking emails and basic entertainment, then high end download muscle power of Verizon FiOS might be an overkill.
The above article is composed and edited by Donna B. She is associated with many technology communities as their freelance writer and adviser. In her free time she writes articles related to internet dongle, technology, mobile applications, etc.