New York City says Verizon did not keep FiOS promise

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 18, 2015 1:54 PM

By Malathi Nayak

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York City said Verizon Communications Inc has failed to fulfill its promise to extend its FiOS high-speed Internet, television and phone service across the city by mid-2014.

An audit released by New City Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration on Thursday found the fiber optic Internet service was unavailable in certain residential blocks even though Verizon had built a citywide fiber network.

In 2008, Verizon agreed to offer the service to all homes in New York City's five boroughs. The aim was to increase competition and offer customers better options.

Verizon's FiOS network is faster and more cost efficient than other cable networks that use copper wire.

The administration in 2014 learned through numerous consumer complaints that Verizon had declined orders from certain households, according to the audit.

In a separate inspection, Verizon told the administration in March that 7,089 out of 29,972, or 23.6 percent, of the total New York City blocks with residential households had buildings with no service, the audit stated.

Verizon has invested $3.5 billion and installed 15,000 miles of fiber across all five boroughs and "disagreed with many parts of the report," spokesman John Bonomo said.

Verizon has brought to the administration's attention the challenge of getting permission to access homes, buildings and adjacent properties from owners and landlords to reach customers, Bonomo said.

(Reporting by Malathi Nayak; Editing by Richard Chang)