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. — Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

msilbey 12/5/2012 | 5:40:33 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

On the flip side, because the network is still underutilizd in my area, I've been known to get LTE speeds faster than my home FiOS connection. Which is naturally entirely unfair given all of my broadband options. But I'm not complaining. I make up for it with DC-area housing prices.

sarahthomas1011 12/5/2012 | 5:40:33 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

Verizon has had a number of widespread LTE outages. That'll be a bigger deal when it's powering everything in your home. Although, I guess rural homes are used to shoddy, or no, service at all.

wanlord 12/5/2012 | 5:40:31 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

yes, but you remember it's not really an complete data "outage" as people say. You fail back to 3G so you are still up and running during the growing pains of 4G. Most don't even know.  Also voice is seperate from data LTE (for now) so that is not affected.


joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:40:30 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

People were complaining about 3G too in the last outage. Verizon also still hasn't answered any questions about why they keep having outages. Getting as secretive as Apple that bunch.

Flook 12/5/2012 | 5:40:27 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

Ya'll making fun of us?

wanlord 12/5/2012 | 5:40:25 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

How often does the power go out in some places and nobody really cares "why"?  The focus is to get it back up and running. They are smart in not divulging details to avoid people asking more questions and trying to over analyze things without the detailed facts and avoids finger pointing with the multiple vendors and systems they use. Power goes out, the Internet has had outages, Google has had outages, cars die, but people will continue to use the next generation technology regardless. I think they know they are ahead of the curve and competitors so focus on the future not the past. 

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:40:24 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

Might be a satisfactory answer if they'd had a few limited hiccups but we're coming on for double-digits on outages now. I'm going to keep digging, people that pay for the service have a right to know.

wanlord 12/5/2012 | 5:40:18 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

solar storms

joset01 12/5/2012 | 5:40:05 PM
re: Verizon Takes LTE to Rural Homes

Supposed to be 200 solar storms this year, Verizon might be in for trouble. ;-)

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