Skip to main content

New York is suing Verizon over poor fiber rollout

Fios TV Package
New York City is suing Verizon over allegedly failed promises to bring fiber internet access to every household in the city by mid-2014. Unsurprisingly, Verizon has disputed the claim, though in doing so it has to contend with its initial contract, since with more than a million homes still without access to FiOS, its fiber-based service, it may struggle to argue that it has abided by its terms.

The 2008 contract signed by the city and Verizon gave the telecom company a citywide franchise in exchange for it completing a universal rollout of its FiOS service by mid-2014. That meant extending it to an estimated 3.1 million homes, but to date only 2.2 million can access it.

While technically the original agreement only extended to cable TV, FiOS can also be used for fiber-based internet connections, and as a result Verizon’s slow timetable has left many people in one of the most developed cities in the world with poor internet access. The dispute claims that Verizon actively ignored requests from some consumers to install FiOS in their buildings.

In a public response to the suit, Verizon stated that some building owners refused to give it access to the required infrastructure for installing such services and that it has upheld its end of the contract “100 percent,” as per ArsTechnica. It also argues that its definition of what constitutes available access is different from the definition being put forth by the city, suggesting that as long as fiber is close enough to a building, it could technically be installed there within a reasonable time, and was therefore “available.”

Perhaps trying to head the city off at the pass, the company has pledged to invest a further billion dollars in NYC fiber infrastructure over the next four years and has promised once again to extend FiOS access to all New Yorkers by 2021.

That may be too little too late. Verizon is already nearly three years behind on its initial pledge and according to the terms of its agreement, it could face monetary damages. NYC admits that the definition of what constitutes available fiber was not outlined in the initial contract, but argues that that definition is well understood and established within the telecoms industry and in that context, Verizon is in breach of its contract.

The city also claims that in some cases Verizon demanded exclusive contracts for buildings before giving the go-ahead to provide its FiOS service there, even though the FCC bans such deals for video service in buildings with multiple dwellings.

Editors' Recommendations

Jon Martindale
Jon Martindale is the Evergreen Coordinator for Computing, overseeing a team of writers addressing all the latest how to…
AT&T, Verizon backtrack on airline fears, agree to delay rollout of 5G spectrum
Quantus plane.

Despite a seemingly unequivocal joint statement from AT&T and Verizon CEOs that they would be forging ahead with scheduled deployments of midband 5G spectrum, it appears that the two carriers have backed down, agreeing to the two-week delay requested by senior U.S. transportation and aviation officials.

Both carriers were to begin rolling out the new C-band spectrum as soon as January 5. However, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Chief Steve Dickson sent a formal request to the CEOs of both companies asking that they delay the rollout for a couple of weeks. This would provide more time to address concerns around possible interference with aircraft instruments, officials said.

Read more
New Intel Alder Lake-P chips may outperform previous generations by over 30%
Intel unveils the 12th Gen Intel Core processor

Intel will soon release a whole new lineup of hybrid mobility CPUs, dubbed Intel Alder Lake-P, and several of these processors have just been leaked through Geekbench tests.

The processors performed well in benchmarks, beating the previous generation of Intel CPUs and current-gen AMD offerings by more than 30%.

Read more
Verizon expands 5G service with home and business mobile internet in new cities
Verizon 5G Super Bowl

Verizon users can expect an expansion in 5G services starting today. Including both 5G home internet and Verizon 5G for Business, the carrier announced starting today both 5G options are now available in Birmingham, Alabama, Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  Similarly, remote work residents can rejoice with these new cities added to their lineup, 5G Home will now be available in 60 cities across the United States. 

According to an announcement by Verizon, 5G Home’s download speeds have increased to up to 1Gbps with typical download speeds of 300Mbps. To attract customers, Verizon is also offering up to $500 to cover early termination fees for those who wish to leave their current internet provider and switch to the 5G home internet.

Read more