Verizon Communications is taking a swing at Time Warner Cable in central New York with the launch Monday of FiOS TV, Internet and voice service to about 50,000 households in parts of eight communities in the region.
Touting more features and HD channels than "old-fashioned cable TV," Verizon will offer the FiOS triple-play in parts of Clay, East Syracuse, North Syracuse, Cicero, DeWitt, Salina, Camillus and Fleming.
At the end of October, the telco plans to expand availability to approximately 12,000 more homes and contingent on the approval of additional franchise agreements hopes to have the service available to almost 100,000 homes in central New York.
Verizon is offering introductory pricing of $79.99 for a triple play for the first six months ($109.99 per month thereafter), which includes the Freedom Essentials unlimited calling plan, 15-Mbps downstream / 5-Mbps upstream Internet, and the FiOS TV Essentials package.
Verizon advertises more than 600 total networks in New York, including 121 HD channels in central New York. In June, Time Warner Cable announced the expansion of its HD lineup to 100 channels for subscribers in central New York, including Syracuse, Utica/Rome and northern New York.
Verizon claimed it has spent almost $1 billion dollars in wireline network infrastructure in upstate areas of New York over the past two years.
"Consumers in these communities at long last have a better choice for TV," said Christopher Creager, president and general manager for Verizon's Northeast region. "We've had great success in many other parts of the state. Now it's time to bring FiOS TV to central New York and provide consumers in the region a choice that is truly different from the cable TV company."
Separately Monday, Verizon also announced the addition of a WeatherBug "widget" for FiOS TV that allows subscribers to access weather reports by ZIP code. The application, available for no additional charge, is displayed on the right side of the screen or can be viewed in full-screen mode.