With the announcement of Verizon's FIOS-TV (fiber optic delivered TV) coming to Washington County sometime this year, it seems like a good time to start a thread and watch-list for the service. The information here will be updated as I discover more about the rollout, and links to the relevant articles will be posted at the end.
Coverage areas and progress:Washington County:
On Feb 8th, The Metro Area Communications Commission voted to approve Verizon's plan to provide TV over their fiber-optic system. They are required to provide the service by the end of 2007 to their customers already wired for fiber-optic service, and complete their build-out to the other areas in four years.
The MACC represents the county and thirteen cities within it. All representatives voted for Verizon's plan except for Gaston and Banks, which Verizon was not planning to serve due to their remote locations. North Plains is also excluded because Verizon does not service that city.
Comcast seemed to take issue with this 'cherry picking' service, claiming that Verizon should not be allowed to only choose affluent communities. Fred Christ of the MACC claimed such practices would not be allowed.
Comcast will now compete head to head with Verizon for cable and internet services in cities such as Tigard, Tualatin, Beaverton and Hillsboro.
Each city must approve the service, however, and those negotiations will occur from now through April.Multnomah County:
Qwest has announced they plan to provide TV service to their Portland customers beginning sometime in 2008. Verizon has started the regulatory process to provide their Multnomah County customers with TV as well, but there's no word on the timeline (probably 2008).Other Areas:
Verizon says that service will later be extended to the other areas it serves, including Gresham and Troutdale on the East side, and Lake Oswego, Dundee, and Newberg on the West side.Cost and Service Information:
Channel plans are considered competitive with Comcast, and generally offerred at lower rates. Here's an excerpt from the linked article below:
"Comcast's "Standard" 73-channel package, its most popular, will cost $50.89 monthly beginning March 1. That's a 7.9 percent increase from last year.
Verizon charges $42.99 a month in other areas, according to the company, for a package with most of the same sports and entertainment networks, but with nearly 100 additional channels."Do I already have fiber-optic cable in my neighborhood?
To see, go to the Verizon FIOS website (link below) and follow the Get Fios links. To double check to see if fiber has been laid in your neighborhood, you can look around in the front yards of nearby houses for a flat, greenish Verizon lid planted flush with the ground. These boxes may vary, but mine is a rectangle approximately 18 x 12 inches, with the words Verizon and Channel.com on it but no indication of it being a fiber hub. Checking for the box might be a good confirmation, as sometimes the website has trouble keeping up with who has the fiber.http://www.verizonfios.com/?ref=verizon
Here's the official announcement published in the Oregonian today (Friday, Feb 9th) - link