Cable Tech

FiOS Evolves Again

4:15 PM -- This past Sunday evening while enjoying the Memorial Day weekend, a friend of mine and I decided to head to a nearby beach and enjoy a stroll along the boardwalk. We had almost arrived at our destination when all of a sudden she implored me to turn the car around and head back to her house. She had forgotten to program her DVR to record 60 Minutes. So I reluctantly complied and drove back so that she could get her Andy Rooney fix upon returning home later that night. By the way, a gallon of gas in New York now costs about $4.20.

Today, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) took what I am hoping is a step toward a solution that would eliminate situations like the one I faced Sunday evening. They've created a FiOS TV Website where customers can now view local TV schedules and information from any computer or laptop with an Internet connection. Later this year, they'll also be able to program their DVR remotely using the new Website. (See Verizon Creates FiOS TV Website.)

There's one big limitation though. The site cannot be accessed from a mobile Web browser which means no programming your DVR from your cellphone just yet. Or in my case, no programming it from the beach instead of driving all the way back home. Verizon says it is "interested in finding ways to leverage all our networks to provide customers with content whenever and wherever they need it," but there are no official announcements just yet on adding mobile access to this feature.

This leaves me scratching my head. If you're creating a Website that allows you to control your DVR remotely doesn't it make way too much sense to untether that capability from wired broadband connections? And if you have a Website that can do these things, wouldn't it be very simple to make it possible for a mobile phone to access it? Let's hope Verizon has the common sense to do so in the near future.

— Raymond McConville, Reporter, Light Reading

vrparente 12/5/2012 | 3:39:56 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again They are probably trying to figure out a solid way to make it so that you can only do it from a Verizon cell phone to drive customer to their cell service!

If it works from the web you can make it work from a cell phone with browser if you hit a proxy along the way, so it won't know your true source address ...
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 3:39:55 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again Just for grins and using LR's FiOS "investment" data of $25,000 per FiOS household, VZ could have purchased 5,952 gallons of gasoline at current NYC prices and given it to you. Assuming about 14 gallons of gas per week that's 8 years and 2 months worth. If VZ shareholders hope to get their investment back I think FiOS subscribes are going to have to pay big bucks in order to program their DVR. And BTW a fiber network designed to utilize its capacity obsoletes the need for a DVR anyway.
mgardner750 12/5/2012 | 3:39:52 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again With a sling box and a sling mobile capable phone, you can manage your DVR and watch programing wirelessly now.

You don't need FiOS, Uverse or goverment bonds to build a fat pipe without DPI, just a $200 box and a readily available broadband connection to the internet.
Raymond McConville 12/5/2012 | 3:39:51 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again true, but I'm not a big fan of having to add more boxes to my entertainment system and having to pay $200 for the luxury. If FiOS did it for you it would be free with no extra equipment and is probably easier to use although I've never used a slingbox so I can't say for sure.
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 3:39:51 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again Despite LR's reporting, I don't think VZ really is in business of giving FiOS subscribers free services. They have to be compensated somehow. There are three choices:

o Directly from consumer payments
o Indirectly from Wall Street investors and or defaulting on bonds
o Indirectly through FCC economic deregulations allowing them to extract money from their competitors or from up and coming application providers

A $200 one time purchase is chump change compared to what VZ will demand for the same services and they'll be in your pocket on a monthly basis for eternity, dishing out the money to themselves, pensions, politicians, etc.
rjmcmahon 12/5/2012 | 3:39:50 PM
re: FiOS Evolves Again For me a fat pipe component is a measure of upload speed as that's the primary bottleneck. Being able to regurgitate more broadcast programming doesn't bring much to the table.
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