“[D]igging up yards and deploying fiber in a lot of new markets isn’t in the cards,” Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam declared during the UBS 41st Annual Global Media & Communications Conference on Monday, according to FierceTelecom. “More and more things are going mobile and I think there are more opportunities to partner out of market with companies that are there versus us going in and deploying FiOS.”
This is exactly what we and others had feared when Verizon entered into that marketing deal with the cable companies. When Verizon began deploying FiOS, it was hoped that the service would compete with the cable and Internet providers that in most areas operate with little or no competition. But in the wake of the housing market collapse, the company slowed its deployment of the network.
The marketing agreement, in which Verizon products and services are sold through Comcast and Time Warner Cable, takes away any incentive for Verizon to push FiOS into new markets where it would need to build new networks. Instead, it could leverage existing cable customers to build its already massive wireless subscriber base without having to run any new fiber lines or, as McAdam says, dig up anyone’s yard.
The CEO of Big V explained the difference between FiOS and AT&T’s U-Verse system, which uses much of the existing copper phone lines rather than having to lay new fiber.
“What [AT&T] has already got is copper to the home and he’s changing out the last mile,” McAdam said. “It’s a little bit of a different situation for us. We’d have to go in and get the local franchise agreements and that always gets complicated.”
So if you’re hoping for fiber service in your area and FiOS hasn’t gotten there yet, don’t expect to see the Verizon truck roll up your street anytime soon.