Last updated: June 21, 2010 - 10:48pm
On June 21, Verizon announced that new FiOS broadband customers can now sign up for service bundles that don't require a long-term contract, only a month-to-month agreement with price protection for one year and no early termination fee. What a consumer-friendly way to do business. In fact, it is so consumer-friendly it begs the question: Why now?
Is Verizon trying to curry some favor with consumer groups and the Federal Communications Commission, as the FCC considers the possibility of new broadband regulation? Is Verizon trying to detract our attention from the fact that it is no longer expanding FiOS availability into new markets? More likely, the telco is responding purely to residential broadband consumer desires. It tried to bring the concept of early termination fees from the wireless world to the wireline world, as a way of protecting its considerable initial investment in deploying FiOS broadband to new customers. But guess what? Residential wireline broadband customers don't like that idea any more than they like the idea of data caps and usage-based billing — another concept that may fly in the wireless world but seems to be a non-starter in wireline.
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