Verizon Targets Philly With FiOS Service

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Verizon may soon provide head-to-head competition with Comcast in the cable company's hometown, as the Philadelphia city council introduced an ordinance Nov. 13 which would enable a franchise agreement with the telephone company.

The agreement is still subject to a vote by the council whether to approve the 15-year franchise agreement.

Under the terms of the proposal, Verizon will deploy its FiOS video service to approximately one-third of the city's residences within three years after the franchise approval; and up to 70 % within five years. The initial service area will include most of the city except eastern neighborhoods; Germantown and greater northeast Philadelphia are also included.

Verizon intends to complete its planned system within seven years.

The city is also requiring up to 15 public, educational and access channels, plus financial support for them. Verizon will also pay 5% of its gross revenues as a franchise fee.

If the city council approves the pact by year's end, Verizon officials said in a statement that it could be delivering video services within the city during the first year of the franchise.

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