Re: Verizon FiOS

I have a few qestions about Verizon's new FiOS service. It was

> recently installed in my neighborhood and I'm thinking about switching > over from Comcast.

Comments below based on the Verizon DSL service, probably applicable to FIOS as well but no warranties, express or implied [etc] ...

1. Does Verizon offer Usenet access with their accounts? Comcast only > offers a limited amount of bandwidth for Usenet and charges extra if > you exceed it.

Obviously (I hope) not *every* USENET newsgroup is carried, but they seem to carry most of the ngs that aren't blatantly illegal. No limitations on usage.

2. Can I connect without using MSN?

I last connected to MSN while working on the technical beta for Windows 95, and then only as part of the beta...and I have absolutely no intention of ever doing so again. In other words, yes.

3. I have three computers. Will they charge me extra for the > additional IP's? If so, how much?

You get one IP per account, and using only one IP at a time is part of your TOS. You are explicitly permitted to connect any number of machines to Verizon through that single IP address using a NAT device.

4. Can I run a personal server? I'd like to be able to host my own > home page on it, as well as a message board. What about game servers > (quake 3, etc.)?

Gray area. The TOS forbids both business and personal servers, but there seems to be some wiggle room based on interpretations by some of Verizon's comments. I've not needed to look into this so I'm not speaking from experience.

5. Will they offer cable tv services? I'd like to dump Comcast > completely. Will they have video on demand?

Reportedly yes but not at present (other than some possible testbed areas) AFAIK.

6. 15/2 service costs $49.95 per month. 30/5 costs $199.95 per > month. Twice the bandwidth, four times the price. Why such a big jump > in price? Can you get two 15/2 packages and join them together > (remember shotgun modems? You could have two 56k modems work as one)?

The price will be lower if you get it as part of a package with local landline service. My *guess* about the nonlinear price structure is that the provisioning of the residential lines is set up with the assumption that most users won't have any nonbusiness need for anything above 15, so the additional work and equipment required to support a line at 30/5 justifies a premium price. Also, by the time you're using 30 MB/sec it's not unreasonable for VZ to wonder if the customer is trying to run a business interface on a residential circuit.

6a. Does the $199.95 package give you the right to run servers? Maybe > that's the reason for the big increase?

Can't say ... but if the 199.95 figure is for *business* service then I would expect no restriction on running a server.

7. Can FiOS handle higher speeds in the future, or will they need to > replace the fiber once again when the next leap in speed comes?

I don't know what specific fiber they're using, but 15 MB/sec is unlikely to be more than a small fraction of its potential.

Joe Morris

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Joe Morris
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