Verizon FiOS ranks near the top among Internet service providers for reliability and speed. It's not available everywhere, but if you can get it in your area, experts say this fiber optic service is the way to go. Coverage is concentrated in the Northeast, with limited availability elsewhere. Verizon FiOS dominates customer satisfaction surveys and draws positive comments in user reviews. The basic download speed is 15 Mbps, with speeds up to 300 Mbps available as monthly plans.
The fastest download speeds available. Verizon FiOS's speeds range from a base download speed of 15 Mbps to an impressive 300 Mbps with FiOS Quantum (*Est. $220 per month) . Upload speeds range from 5 Mbps to 65 Mbps. While experts say some cable ISPs can now deliver speeds at the low end of this range, Verizon FiOS is still much faster than any DSL service.
Verizon FiOS consistently provides high-speed access to the Internet in third-party tests, and ConsumerReports.org agrees. At BroadbandReports.com, subscribers comment on connection, reliability and technical support among other criteria and consistently rate Verizon FiOS above 80 percent for the last six months. Some professional reviews lump Verizon FiOS in with Verizon's DSL and mobile Internet services, however, so their results don't give an accurate picture of FiOS's speed.
Nine email accounts. Verizon FiOS subscribers get nine free email accounts with their service plan, each with 2 GB of space for messages. Users also have free Wi-Fi access at more than 5,000 Verizon hotspots nationwide. Each package includes 10 MB of web hosting storage and access to 24/7 customer support. Yet reviewers and customers dislike that Verizon's Internet security suite comes at an additional cost (*Est. $10 per month).
Prices can be reduced if you bundle your Internet service with TV and/or home phone service, and you can get free gifts such as a $100 prepaid Visa card if you sign a two-year contract. A mobile app is available for FiOS that lets you stream live video to your iPad when you're at home.
Dominates reviews. Customers give Verizon FiOS the highest ratings of any Internet service. Its average customer score at BroadbandReports.com over the past six months is 83 percent, earning FiOS a Gold Award. Verizon FiOS earns the best grades overall in a readers' survey at PCMag.com, handily beating out Wow! and Cox Cable, and winning a Readers' Choice Award. Users praise FiOS for its ease of setup and reliability, and are very satisfied with any repairs that were needed.
1. J.D. Power & Associates
Review Credibility: Excellent Ratings are based on a customer satisfaction study conducted in 2012. Almost 21,000 respondents rate their ISPs on overall satisfaction, performance and reliability, cost of service, customer service, billing, and offerings and promotions. Results are grouped by geographical region, with Verizon ranking highly but not at the top of the pack in all regions except North Central. For providers like Verizon that offer fiber optic and DSL, or DSL and cable, the results don't specify which Internet service type is being rated.
Review: 2012 U.S. Residential Internet Service Provider Satisfaction Study , Editors of J.D. Power and Associates, Oct. 15, 2012
Review Credibility: Excellent ConsumerReports.org surveys more than 62,000 subscribers in 2012 and uses the results to rate ISPs on value, reliability, connection speed and customer support. Verizon FiOS is among the Internet services covered.
Review: Internet Service Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, May 2013
Review Credibility: Very Good PCMag.com surveys readers on their satisfaction with their ISP providers. Verizon FiOS earns the best grades overall, handily beating out its competitors Wow! and Cox Cable, and winning a Readers' Choice Award. Users praise FiOS for its ease of setup, reliability and customer support.
Review: Readers' Choice Awards 2012: ISPs, Routers, and Network Attached Storage (NAS) for the Home, Ben Gottesman, April 30, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good This is the most recent PCMag.com report on IPS's speed, and it contains the results of more than 58,000 user tests. Verizon comes in fourth place, but because its FiOS speeds are blended into the results of its DSL service, this isn't an accurate account.
Review: The Fastest ISPs in the U.S. 2011, Eric Griffith, Aug. 31, 2011
Review Credibility: Very Good This article discusses Verizon FiOS Mobile apps that allow users to control their home entertainment devices remotely from their iPad. In addition to scheduling and managing your DVR recordings, you can now stream live TV to your iPad when you're at home.
Review: Verizon FiOS Mobile (for iPad), Joel Santo Domingo , Nov. 30, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good In this press release, ConsumerReports.org editors explain that bundling your TV, Internet and phone services results in appreciable savings. In a survey of 84,000 readers, FiOS -- the fiber-optic-based TV, digital-landline phone and high-speed Internet service from Verizon -- receives the highest scores. It's followed by Wow! Cable, which is available in a few Midwestern cities.
Review: Consumer Reports Survey: Bundling TV, Internet, and Phone Services Point to Big Savings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, March 28, 2013
Review Credibility: Good Verizon FiOS earns a score of 7.6 out of 10 here, losing points for charging extra for its Internet security tools. Editors say third-party tests of FiOS's speeds show that it consistently provides high-speed Internet access.
Review: Verizon `, Not dated
Review Credibility: Fair Contributors rate ISPs using six criteria, including connection reliability, technical support and value. The most recent reviews are shown first and can be sorted by location. The site gives Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards based on the rolling six-month average score each ISP gets from users. Verizon FiOS gets a Gold Award for earning an average score of 80 percent or higher for the past six months; its current average is 82 percent.
Review: All Reviews of Verizon FiOS (Fiber), Contributors to BroadbandReports.com, As of April 2013