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Verizon’s Broadband Answer for Rural America: Wireless Internet $60/Month, Up to 10GB of Usage

Verizon Wireless today introduced HomeFusion Broadband: a new service that provides high-speed in-home Internet access using the company’s 4G LTE wireless network.

Designed primarily to reach households with limited broadband options, HomeFusion will deliver download speeds of 5-12Mbps and upload speeds of 2-5Mbps. While installation will come free of charge, a one-time equipment charge of $199.99 applies.  Pricing is nearly identical to Verizon’s mobile broadband service:

  • Up to 10GB — $60/month
  • Up to 20GB — $90/ month
  • Up to 30GB — $120/month
  • Overlimit fee: $10/GB

Verizon's 4G LTE antenna must be mounted on an outside wall of your home to assure good reception. (Picture: The Verge)

Verizon says HomeFusion is their broadband answer for rural America.

“HomeFusion Broadband is just one of the new products and services that is made possible with our 4G LTE network,” said Tami Erwin, vice president and chief marketing officer, Verizon Wireless. “Customers want to connect more and more devices in their homes to the Internet, and HomeFusion Broadband gives them a simple, fast and effective way to bring the most advanced wireless connection from Verizon into their homes.”

A third party company, Asurion, will handle installation of Verizon’s cylinder-shaped antenna, installed on the side of a customer’s home.  The antenna is designed to pick up the best possible signal from Verizon’s growing 4G network.  The antenna transmits the signal to a company supplied router capable of connecting up to four wired and 20 wireless devices.

HomeFusion Broadband will be available beginning later this month in Birmingham, Ala., Dallas and Nashville, Tenn., with additional markets to follow.

Verizon’s product is unlikely to attract substantial interest in more populated areas where a 10GB monthly usage cap would prove unacceptable in many homes where multimedia content is a growing part of the Internet experience.  But is could compete with satellite broadband, which also has low monthly usage caps.  Verizon may also win back customers in service areas it sold to independent providers like FairPoint and Frontier Communications, which have since saddled most of their rural customers with 1-3Mbps DSL service.  But Verizon’s pricing puts rural America at a usage disadvantage because of the low monthly limits and higher price tag.

The development of HomeFusion could reduce Verizon’s investment and interest in further expanding its traditional rural broadband product — DSL.  But Verizon will have to expand its still-urban focused LTE 4G network further into the countryside for HomeFusion to serve its intended market.

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  • Paul Houle: The big issue with Fiber is that it has high costs to set up, not so much because the hardware is expensive, but because you have to either dig up t...
  • Scott: Perfectly example of why I still don't subscribe to cable or satellite. The only channel I *might* watch out of that entire lineup is Comedy Central....
  • James Cieloha: CableOne, Service Electric, GCI, Buckeye and other NCTC members are being forced by Viacom to add the Epix movie channels in order to carry the cable ...
  • Dave Hancock: I don't know where AP lives, but in MOST areas of the country MOST people do not have any choice for High Speed Internet (15mbps or above) - it is the...
  • tacitus: That doesn't sound right. Are you in some sort of contract? Where in the country is this?...
  • AP: Good luck cutting cable if you live in an area that has one cable, internet, and phone company like I do. If you want internet or phone with the cable...
  • Dave Hancock: Soon the rest of the cable companies will follow Verizon's lead and start limiting the input bandwidth to their systems (ex: Netflix) to discourage su...
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  • Scott: Not good, that takes away all your leverage in the situation. If you're holding the money you can work through the BBB or try and negotiate with the ...
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