FIOS: trying to understand it and whether I should upgrade

Posted on 2006-10-19
Last Modified: 2010-03-19
I have comcast cable. I'm thinking of getting Verizon FIOS.

My friend says it's about 3 times faster.

However, this morning I timed my
downloads at 100kB/s
or something
and uploads between 36kB/s and 150kB/s or something.
(I wasn't paying attention to whether the screen said kb or Kb.  (I use Linux)

my flyer from Verizon says FIOS can be as fast as 15Mbps.

how fast can I expect it to be realistically? and does it slow down as more people get on?

how is it different from T-1 in terms of the technology.

Question by:rark
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LVL 95

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17769782
I don't know all that much about it, other than that it is a Fiber-optic based connection so your potential speeds are EXTREMELY fast.  In my area, I was told as fasts as 50Mb for the $30 or so per month plan.  (Hoping to get it in about 3 months - they are literrally running the cables in my neighborhood as I type).
LVL 95

Assisted Solution

by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 175 total points
ID: 17769795
More information can be found here:

As well as on the Verizon web site.
LVL 18

Accepted Solution

simsjrg earned 175 total points
ID: 17770472
Speakeasy Speed Test:

Last Result:
Download Speed: 14344 kbps (1793 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 1838 kbps (229.8 KB/sec transfer rate)

The Download is a little off. It's usually just over 15000 kbps
That upload is about where it will stay. Never goes over 1900 kbps

> my flyer from Verizon says FIOS can be as fast as 15Mbps.
My plan is 15/2 for $47 a month. I am on Long Island.
> how fast can I expect it to be realistically? and does it slow down as more people get on?
Haven't seen it happen as of yet. Seems pretty much consistant...

> how is it different from T-1 in terms of the technology.
1. It's not dedicated
2. T1 is only 1.544Mbps
3. T1 usually would require additional equipment such as a router with a T1 WIC to accept the connection where as FiOS is a straight Ethernet handoff.
... just to name a few...

Author Comment

ID: 17774669
thank you sim.  that was quite useful.  Since you say it's not dedicated like T1, does it mean when more people are logged on, it's slower?

leew, the wiki link was very good. the most important thing i learned is that if I have FIOS installed, copper is (irreversibly removed), and that in a power outage, my phone line will go away after 4-8 hours when the battery dies.

Does that concern people?  It worries me, though I'm not in a hurricane or terrorist area.  I don't like not having a phone line when power is out.
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LVL 95

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17775553
The old phone system is getting more and more computerized and "electrified" - in some cases, even the PSTN (old style phone system you're probably using, Public Switched Telephone Network) won't work after a power outage.  

And besides, Don't you have a cell phone?

Also, you can always go out and buy a generator.  Or a larger UPS (I have a 2200 Va - I'm not sure the size of the one FiOS provides, but it's almost certainly half that size at least.
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 17778634
> Since you say it's not dedicated like T1, does it mean when more people are logged on, it's slower?
I am not sure how many people are in my area that have it but at around 5-9 PM I see 13-14 Mbps rather then my usuall 15+... Not that I ever use all 15 but when I check my speeds at those times I see thats what I get. I am not going to say it's shared bandwidth as I am not 100% sure but in my opinion unless your using a business class service they wont promise you anything.

Author Comment

ID: 17783945
thank you both.  I'll look into an UPS.  Cell phone lines go down before land lines do, so I'm not eager to rely on a cell phone in an emergncy.

Author Comment

ID: 17783949
PS I wanted to accept all the answers from both experts.  I hope I did it correctly.  

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