Verizon’s FiOS service makes Steel City debut
After clearing the final hurdle last week with a franchise agreement vote by Pittsburgh’s city council, Verizon has launched its FiOS TV service in the Steel City.
The terms of the franchise agreement included Verizon offering its video service to more than 160,000 households in Pittsburgh within six years of the cable franchise being awarded.
The 10-year franchise agreement in Pittsburgh also included the payment of franchise fees equivalent to 5 percent of gross revenues on the cable TV service. Under its current deal, Comcast also pays the same 5 percent.
Verizon will square off against Comcast in the Pittsburgh area. Comcast serves 850,000 customers in its Pittsburgh footprint, and its 10-year franchise agreement is set to expire at the end of this year.
Verizon was granted a 15-year franchise agreement in Comcast’s hometown of Philadelphia earlier this year.
Verizon said it was offering more than 600 channels in Pittsburgh, including more than 120 HD channels, which it said was more than Comcast is currently offering.
Pittsburgh residents who are FiOS TV-eligible have the option to trim their monthly bills with packages that include FiOS TV, FiOS Internet and voice service for $79.99 per month for the first six months. Customers who sign up for a qualifying FiOS service before Dec. 19 may be eligible for $150 cash back.
Verizon also started a promotion on Monday that includes a $150 prepaid Visa card when customers sign up for its double- and triple-play bundles. The offer runs through Dec. 31.
In addition to the Visa card, new customers ordering qualifying bundles will also receive a 24-month price guarantee and free installation. New FiOS triple-play customers who order qualifying mid-tier and top-tier bundles will receive their choice of HBO and Cinemax movie channels or an International Language Package, at no additional charge for three months.
Existing FiOS customers who add a qualifying new FiOS TV or Internet service also are eligible for the Verizon Visa prepaid card and the two-year price guarantee.