NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

August 13, 2009

FiOS TV won't be coming to Port screens very soon

NEWBURYPORT — Mayor John Moak had some bad news to report yesterday — FiOS TV won't be coming to the city anytime soon.

Verizon first approached the city in July 2008 to say the company was seeking to provide its FiOS — fiber optic system — television service to Newburyport. It also approached Newbury at the same time. West Newbury, Rowley and Georgetown already have FiOS service.

Comcast is currently the exclusive provider of cable service in Newburyport.

Moak said he was formally notified by Verizon yesterday; however, the city had been expecting such news as it had heard of similar scenarios in other communities.

"They are pausing with their negotiations with any communities that they do not already have a major capital investment involved," Moak said. "There will be no FiOS or Verizon in Newburyport in the near future."

The company did not give the city any time frame for when it might again start up conversations, but the mayor said he asked Verizon to keep the city at the top of their list when it is again ready to resume talks.

"I did encourage them to keep in mind that Newburyport would be a very good client for them," Moak said.

The city has been in negotiations with Verizon for some months and has been pushing the company to negotiate, but talks began to stall over the last few months, Moak said.

FiOS TV doesn't use the copper coaxial cable used in conventional cable networks. Instead, the network relies on bundled fiber-optic cables, providing improved signal clarity and greater bandwidth than conventional cable networks.

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