Verizon Readies IP Network, Raises DSL Fees

Verizon announced the deployment of its nationwide high-speed network for enterprise users, while raising DSL fees $2 to $3 a month for consumers.

April 14, 2004

2 Min Read
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There's a good news-bad news scenario playing out for Verizon Communications' broadband users. The regional telephone company announced the deployment of its 9.7 million mile nationwide high-speed network for enterprise users, while raising DSL fees $2 to $3 a month for consumers.

The new network is part of Verizon's Enterprise Advance initiative and is targeted at enterprise users. The company says it ranks third in the $100 billion-plus market for voice and data technologies in large enterprises. Verizon said its DSL surcharge is to help pay for fees mandated by the federal government, though the amount of the add-on cost is not an actual government requirement.

As for the new upgraded network, vice president Stu Elby said in a statement, "Verizon has deployed the new network infrastructure and equipment and is now in the final testing and trial phase of deployment. The network architecture deployed by Verizon will support high-bandwidth applications."

Among the new enterprise services that Verizon plans to launch in the next month are an IP-virtual private network (IP-VPN), which will provide the foundation for Verizon's VoIP. The company said it expects to launch the Web-phoning service later this year. Verizon said the new network construction included the completion of nine regional rings that connect with Verizon's national network. More than 200 routers scattered around 56 urban and regional markets have been installed.

The firm's backbone core is focused on 13 major cities, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Angeles, New York, Newark, Philadelphia, Reston, Seattle, San Francisco, and Tampa. Verizon said its Enterprise Solutions Group will manage the design and operation of networks for large enterprise users. The firm said its multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) technology enables most customers to use the new network without having to upgrade equipment.Regional telephone companies BellSouth and SBC Communications are also adding new DSL fees, similar to fees charged by wireless providers. The companies claim the fees cover their contributions to the Universal Service Fund, which subsidizes services in rural areas and elsewhere. Critics, however, have complained that such "regulatory" fees are arbitrary and confusing to consumers, since the government does not specify the amounts to be charged. Several states and consumer groups have filed lawsuits challenging the billing practice.

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