Just because your neighbor has Verizon’s Fios internet and cable service doesn’t mean you can get it.
The Chronicle recently learned that although residents on one side of a street on the Northside may have Fios services, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the other side does, too. For example, as one North Taylor Avenue resident pointed out, one side of the street has service and the other doesn’t.
The reason, said Verizon Public Relations Director Harry Mitchell, is because the network is still under construction, and won’t be finished until late 2015.
Verizon, he said, is about 15 months into the construction process of the fiber optic network that will — eventually — replace its older copper wire network. Fios runs on a 100 percent fiber optic network, which means the company has to “overlay” the fiber optic cables on the copper cables.
The company still uses copper cable for its non-Fios high speed internet and regular phone service.
Mitchell said Verizon builds outward from 17 central offices, or hubs, where all the wires come into and out of. Hubs only reach so far, he said, so one hub might serve one side of the street and a different hub might serve another.
There are other things that factor into Verizon’s building plan, Mitchell said, but they are complex and many of the processes are proprietary.
In September 2009, the City of Pittsburgh granted Verizon a cable franchise, allowing the company to offer Fios television service, Mitchell said, which made its Fios internet service more attractive because residents could get phone, internet and television in one package.
Verizon does keep a “fairly up-to-date” construction schedule that lists the streets to which the company is bringing Fios currently or will bring in the near future, Mitchell said. It is located at www.verizon.com/pa under the link “FTTP Construction Schedule.”
To check if your address has Fios service, or for more information, visit www.verizon.com.