FiOS Internet: First Looks
Hoboken411 has been periodically updating the Verizon FiOS progress in town (check that post for more information).
While I always thought Cablevision Optimum Online was rock solid – and getting faster by the month – it’s been frustrating the living daylights out of me for the past couple months. Seems to have been going out more often – to the point where I had to reboot the modem three or four times daily. Often times in the middle of something important. Tech support didn’t help – replacing the modem didn’t help. I HAD IT!
Making the switch
I decided it was time to give Verizon FiOS Internet a shot.
Went for the 20/20 plan. 20Mbps up and 20Mbps down. Cost for that alone? $69.99/month (with one year contract). I called to set it up… and at first they said they’ve been very overwhelmed with orders- and it could take two or more weeks… but got lucky and was able to have a technician come and install in two days.
PHOTO GALLERY (HOLD MOUSE OVER IMAGE TO NAVIGATE – 3 PHOTOS IN THIS SET)
I was previously paying about $55/month for OptOnline (I have DirecTV).
Because I’m writing this entry having not slept for two days straight – and fading fast – I’ll summarize my experience bullet-point style:
- Make room for a big box! I was unaware of the rather bulky control box that needed to be installed inside your home. It needs AC power as well.
- Do a speed test. I was getting 13Mbps down and 4Mbps up on my Optimum Online account. Not bad! I ran the FiOS speed test – and got 20Mbps Down and 8Mbps Up. Not what I paid for! I’ll be calling Verizon to get this straightened out (either they fix it – or I get a reduced monthly rate.)
- My previous setup was: Cable Modem + Wireless router. The current setup has the modem and router built into one. A fairly decent setup and configuration program is embedded in the firmware.
- While some folks say that you shouldn’t be able to notice a difference between 13Mbps and 20Mbps – I will say that there was a noticeable improvement in surfing and downloading speeds. I haven’t tried serious uploads yet.
- Be prepared! It could take all day! I was told by the technician that most installs take about four hours – some as long as EIGHT! Luckily I’m tech-savvy – and actually helped him a lot. But I also didn’t need any internal wiring, special software configurations, etc. He finished up in under two hours total.
- Has anyone tried the TV service yet? I’d like to futz around with it – see how it works to navigate channels, how quick it is, etc. Because my current DirecTV HD-DVR setup – while the picture quality and channel selection is good – takes up to 10 seconds to switch channels at times. Oh – one other thing – for those that own 1080p HD TV’s – DirecTV now says they will offer 1080p movies! I wonder if Verizon or Cablevision plan the same?
I’ll report back periodically with updates about the quality of service, the speed, and anything else that comes up.
Closing note: Order online – it’s cheaper. For some convoluted reason, I didn’t get the free month by ordering via phone (I guess that pays for the operator’s salary). I thought I could negotiate all sorts of stuff because I was “switching” – I guess I don’t have the magic touch anymore…