Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

New HomeFusion service brings LTE speeds to underserved rural homes and could serve as replacement if Verizon's spectrum holdings allow it

Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms

March 6, 2012

2 Min Read
Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

Verizon Wireless is extending its 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network to rural households that can't get DSL or cable.

The service, called HomeFusion Broadband and introduced Tuesday, requires the installation of an antenna to the side of a home that transmits LTE signals to a broadband router inside. Verizon says the router can connect up to four wired and at least 20 wireless devices inside the home via Wi-Fi. As with Verizon's traditional LTE service, HomeFusion Broadband promises downlink speeds of 5Mbit/s to 12Mbit/s and uplinks in the range of 2Mbit/s to 5Mbit/s.

HomeFusion will launch later this month in Dallas; Nashville, Tenn.; and Birmingham, Ala. The tiered service starts at $60 per month for 10GB of data, in addition to a one-time $200 equipment fee. A Verizon spokeswoman says the service will be available nationwide later in the year, but is best suited for single family dwellings or multi-dwelling units with up to three floors.

Why this matters
For now, HomeFusion is only targeted at those homes that don't have another option, but the fast speeds of LTE could make it an attractive replacement for any home only served by slower DSL speeds. Verizon may not, however, be looking to completely replace DSL with LTE, as the carrier has warned it might run short on LTE spectrum in some markets -- albeit mainly urban ones -- by 2013. (See Will Verizon Abandon DSL for Mobile Broadband? and Verizon Fears 4G Spectrum Shortfall .)

Verizon has been trialing a rural LTE service similar to HomeFusion with DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV) for the past year, but a Verizon spokeswoman says the new offering is strictly a Verizon LTE network offering. It will, however, likely catch the attention of independent cable operators looking for a partner in rural areas, as well as be a cause for concern for satellite providers that may have previously been the only high-speed Internet option for rural households. (See DirecTV Preps Broadband Boxes, Flirts With LTE and ViaSat to Phase Out WildBlue .)

For more
Read up on Verizon's LTE deployment below.

  • Verizon: LTE Is Back

  • T-Mob, MetroPCS Try to Block Verizon-MSO Deal

  • Mapping LTE: AT&T & Verizon's 4G Footprints

  • Verizon LTE Gets Spoofed

  • Verizon Plots 5 New LTE Markets

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

About the Author(s)

Sarah Thomas

Director, Women in Comms

Sarah Thomas's love affair with communications began in 2003 when she bought her first cellphone, a pink RAZR, which she duly "bedazzled" with the help of superglue and her dad.

She joined the editorial staff at Light Reading in 2010 and has been covering mobile technologies ever since. Sarah got her start covering telecom in 2007 at Telephony, later Connected Planet, may it rest in peace. Her non-telecom work experience includes a brief foray into public relations at Fleishman-Hillard (her cussin' upset the clients) and a hodge-podge of internships, including spells at Ingram's (Kansas City's business magazine), American Spa magazine (where she was Chief Hot-Tub Correspondent), and the tweens' quiz bible, QuizFest, in NYC.

As Editorial Operations Director, a role she took on in January 2015, Sarah is responsible for the day-to-day management of the non-news content elements on Light Reading.

Sarah received her Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She lives in Chicago with her 3DTV, her iPad and a drawer full of smartphone cords.

Away from the world of telecom journalism, Sarah likes to dabble in monster truck racing, becoming part of Team Bigfoot in 2009.

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