Home / Blogs

Capping Broadband Internet by Design

FIOS by Verizon, is a bundled Internet access, telephone, and television service that operates over a fiber-optic communications network with over 5 million customers in nine U.S. states—providing Fiber to the Home (FTTH). One of the first service areas was a Northern Virginia community known as Ashburn—which is also is the cloud data center capital of the world. It literally sits on top of the most massive mesh of high bandwidth, low latency fiber in existence.

The initial speed of the Ashburn community FIOS offerings were a once-fast 35 Mbit/s, and several years ago, increased to a relatively symmetric 50-80 Mbit/s. Meanwhile, however, the FTTH residential bandwidth technology increased dramatically—allowing for relatively low cost 200 to near 1000 Mbit/s service offerings.

FIOS, however, per its customer service staff, has not upgraded its central office equipment for these early FIOS installations and remains uncommitted as to when it will occur. The matter is embarrassing and untenable in two respects. Customers are forced to continue paying significant monthly charges for Internet service that is a fraction of the slowest speeds now commonly available. Those same customers are also surrounded by scores of huge cloud facilities dotting the landscape everywhere with massive optical fiber-based bandwidth, which abounds along the roads and trails exchanging Petabytes of data.

What FIOS has architected is essentially capping broadband Internet by design to avoid changing central office equipment supporting the service of older customers. The initial customers who have been paying for FTTH infrastructure installed to provide FIOS a competitive advantage in planned communities a decade and a half ago are now being forced to continue subsidizing old equipment. Ironically, new customers get the best services at the lowest rates.

Especially ironic is that the provider here pitches Fios Forward to Washington policy makers for “digital inclusion,” while it actually excludes longtime customers from Fios Forward in its famous data center, fiber-optic wired community a mere 30 miles to the West.

By Anthony Rutkowski, Principal, Netmagic Associates LLC

The author is a leader in many international cybersecurity bodies developing global standards and legal norms over many years.

Visit Page

Filed Under


Comment Title:

  Notify me of follow-up comments

We encourage you to post comments and engage in discussions that advance this post through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can report it using the link at the end of each comment. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of CircleID. For more information on our comment policy, see Codes of Conduct.

CircleID Newsletter The Weekly Wrap

More and more professionals are choosing to publish critical posts on CircleID from all corners of the Internet industry. If you find it hard to keep up daily, consider subscribing to our weekly digest. We will provide you a convenient summary report once a week sent directly to your inbox. It's a quick and easy read.

I make a point of reading CircleID. There is no getting around the utility of knowing what thoughtful people are thinking and saying about our industry.

Co-designer of the TCP/IP Protocols & the Architecture of the Internet




Sponsored byDNIB.com

Domain Names

Sponsored byVerisign

Brand Protection

Sponsored byCSC

Threat Intelligence

Sponsored byWhoisXML API


Sponsored byVerisign

IPv4 Markets

Sponsored byIPv4.Global

New TLDs

Sponsored byRadix