One of Verizon’s big plans for growth this year is pushing its “FiOS” fibre-optic TV/Internet/phone service into big, dense cities like New York. So far, the telco has attracted about 1 million subscribers to its cable-like TV service, but mostly in suburban areas.
What’s holding them back from selling up TV service in Manhattan? Construction, for one — it takes time to lay pipe in the ground, and the telco has had to experiment with special fibre to turn corners in apartment buildings. But politicians are also slowing things down. Today’s Daily News sums up Verizon’s progress as it applies for a cable franchise licence here.
Key points: Top-secret talks between Verizon and the city have been going on for months and a deal was supposed to be finalised before the end of last year. The major disconnect: The city wants Verizon to build out its new network equally in wealthy and poor neighborhoods — whereas the telco would presumably be better off focusing first on pricier areas, where people might sign up for more expensive service packages and pay their bills on time.
And like all cities negotiating franchise licenses, the NYC government probably wants to extract the most it can from Verizon — like how much revenue it will get per month, per subscriber, how many public access channels Verizon will offer, and how many city buildings it will wire with FiOS.
Franchise negotiations can last a long time, but like the Daily News’ Juan Gonzalez, we expect this one to get wrapped up sooner than later. As the city’s cable providers Time Warner Cable and Cablevision go after more Verizon customers with bundles of TV, Internet, and digital phone service, Verizon needs FiOS in New York City more than New Yorkers need FiOS.
See Also: Verizon FiOS Great For Subscribers, Stinks For Investors
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