“Fiber” is the big buzzword in broadband plans lately. There’s a reason it’s getting so much attention: Verizon Fios.

For most Americans, choosing an Internet provider means deciding between cable and DSL. For the lucky few in the relatively small Fios service area, fiber service from Verizon Fios is a long-awaited third option.

But fiber is more than just a buzzword — it’s the first major upgrade for home internet plans since broadband replaced dial-up in the late 90s. The speed upgrade is just as dramatic, offering “gigabit” service more than 10x faster than traditional cable and DSL.[1]

Note: Fios is only available in select areas. Use this page to check to see if Verizon Fios is available at your address.


  • Industry-leading Gigabit speeds
  • Blazing fast upload speeds
  • 4K TV Channels


  • Limited availability
  • Contract pricing

Verizon Fios Plans

DealsPrice MonthlyInternet SpeedPhone
Fios 100/100 $3999 100 Mbps Fiber(844) 433-6085
Best Internet-Only Cord Cutter Deal $7999 940 Mbps Fiber(844) 433-6085
Best Fios Gigabit Triple Play Offer $7999 940 Mbps Fiber(844) 433-6085
300/300 Mbps Internet $5999 300 Mbps Fiber(844) 433-6085

If you're looking to compare plans, make sure to check out our detailed guide on the latest Verizon Fios deals and promotions.

What Makes Fios Special?

Fios is famous for providing an end-to-end optical fiber network. Fiber cables are the gold standard for transporting digital data, far superior to “analog” options like coaxial cable (think TV) and DSL (think landline phones).

Most of the internet is made up of fiber networks — but the “last mile” between the mainstream internet and your house has traditionally been bridged with existing cables installed for TV and phone service.

Why? Honestly, because it’s cheap, and most internet providers don’t want to invest billions of dollars to upgrade something that already “works”.

Verizon Fios took that risk, and it’s been paying off for them. They’re consistently rated one of the best-liked providers in the country, and competing cable providers are struggling to earn customers in areas where they overlap.

How is Fios Faster?

A highway as a metaphor for bandwidth.
“Bandwidth” is often described as the number of lanes on the highway, while “speed” is the speed of vehicles on the highway. Fios fiber has many more “lanes” than traditional cable or DSL service.

If the internet is an “information superhighway,” think of bandwidth as lanes on that highway. The more lanes you have, the more efficient it is for traffic to spread out and move as quickly as possible.

In this analogy, Fios is an Interstate network. Cable is a local highway route, and DSL is a winding country road.

…What about dial-up? Probably a hiking trail.

In addition to having more space for individual “data lanes” in fiber networks, the speed limit is also much higher, since information is transmitted as light rather than radio frequency transmission. The speed of light is famously unmatched, resulting in much less latency for 100% fiber networks.

The other major Fios advantage is that the lines carrying internet data aren’t sharing bandwidth with traditional phone or TV, which can lead to signal loss and slower-than-advertised speeds on cable and DSL networks.

Verizon Fios Availability

Verizon Fios Coverage & Availability Map


Verizon Fios’ drawback is that it’s only available in a few densely populated areas, since the high cost of installation makes it difficult for Verizon to serve rural customers.

The company also sold some of their network to Frontier Communications in 2016,[2] although Frontier seems committed to continuing to expand FTTH (Fiber to the Home) network development in those areas.

Verizon Fios Speed Data

Verizon Fios Download Speeds Over Time

CityVerizon Fios Average SpeedVerizon Fios Top 10% Speeds
Arlington, Virginia104 Mbps223 Mbps
Bronx, New York77 Mbps148 Mbps
Brooklyn, New York78 Mbps148 Mbps
Buffalo, New York50 Mbps92 Mbps
Flushing, New York67 Mbps145 Mbps
Jamaica, New York70 Mbps148 Mbps
Jersey City, New Jersey65 Mbps144 Mbps
New York, New York103 Mbps248 Mbps
Newark, New Jersey93 Mbps225 Mbps
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania70 Mbps110 Mbps
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania58 Mbps102 Mbps
Providence, Rhode Island60 Mbps142 Mbps
Richmond, Virginia70 Mbps134 Mbps
Silver Spring, Maryland68 Mbps131 Mbps
Staten Island, New York66 Mbps125 Mbps
Trenton, New Jersey66 Mbps138 Mbps
Virginia Beach, Virginia56 Mbps118 Mbps
Washington, District of Columbia76 Mbps168 Mbps
Woodbridge, Virginia88 Mbps216 Mbps
Yonkers, New York59 Mbps101 Mbps

Fios Factors to Consider


Fios installation usually takes much longer than a standard cable or DSL install. Budget 4–6 hours for the technician to be in your home.

The reason it takes longer is because fiber Internet has advanced hardware requirements. Rather than simply configuring a new modem/router on your existing cable or phone jack, the Fios technician will have to install a completely new system, including an ONT (Optical Network Terminal), new in-house cabling, and configure all your set-top boxes for TV service.

The process usually looks like this:

Verizon Fios Installation Steps

  1. Install ONT (Optical Network Terminal) box
  2. Connect cables to coaxial splitter to segregate TV/Internet traffic
  3. Re-wire home if existing coaxial cable is insufficient for your needs
  4. Install and configure set-top boxes and Internet router


Verizon is trying very hard to win over cable and DSL customers, and they’re doing it through aggressive pricing on Fios bundles.

You can see the latest Verizon Fios Bundle Promotions on this page or Verizon’s website.

Some of these bundle deals are great opportunities for customers who plan on using their TV and/or phone service regularly. Just be sure to check the promotional price against the final monthly price, especially if signing a two-year contract.

If you get caught out and are not happy with what you’re paying for internet, TV and phone services, you can always try ring and negotiate your Fios bill. Be warned, we’ve found Verizon Fios to be one of the more difficult providers to gain a reduction in your bill, but there are a few tactics that just might work to save you some money.

Fios Hardware: What About My Router?

When you sign up, Fios will probably make it seem like using your own router isn’t an option. In fact, they only offer one: the Fios Quantum Gateway. (Which is replacing the older Actiontec Gateway.)

…And to be honest, using Verizon-branded equipment is a good idea for most customers (especially on the faster “gigabit” plans).

That said, using your own router is absolutely an option if you’re willing to put in the extra elbow grease to set it up. This will save you the monthly rental fee, and open up advanced home networking possibilities for Internet power users.

First, understand that Verizon Fios uses a slightly different hardware setup than cable and DSL:

Traditional cable/DSL setup: The modem/router gateway plugs into your existing cable/phone jack.

Verizon Fios setup: The modem/router gateway plugs into an ONT (Optical Network Terminal) box outside your home or apartment via a coaxial cable.

You have three options for hooking up your own router to the Fios ONT system:

Option 1: Use Verizon router as a bridge to your own router

This doesn’t save you the up-front cost of the Verizon router, but it’s the best option if you simply want to expand your home network and unlock advanced router features.

Simply attach your new router to the LAN port of the Verizon gateway and follow the new router’s setup wizard to establish an Internet connection and disable Wi-Fi on the old router.

Option 2: Connect your router directly to ONT with Ethernet

Fios will push for coaxial cable in-home when they install the ONT box because it’s a good choice the TV services they offer alongside Internet. If you have an Internet-only plan under 100Mbps up/down, you can simply use the ONT’s Ethernet jack and use it as the “modem” for your router.

First, find an Ethernet wire long enough to connect the router in your house to the ONT box. Then call Verizon customer care and ask for a DHCP release/renew. They’ll walk you through it over the phone, and once it’s been switched you should be able to set up your router as normal.

Option 3: Advanced Sorcery

If you want to maintain your set-top box functionality and other Fios TV features intact, or expand your home network radically on a gigabit plan, setting up a custom network becomes more complex than we can cover here.

Methods change depending on the hardware that’s current and service offerings in your area. Until we publish our guide to advanced home networking with Verizon Fios, customer reports on hacks and workarounds can be found through searching online forums.

Conclusion: Verizon Fios is the Top-Shelf Option for Internet and TV

A highway as a metaphor for bandwidth.
Fios is a must-have for anyone who identifies as a techie.

If your primary concern as an internet user is cost, Verizon Fios might not be the best place to look.

If your top priority is quality of service, however, then you should absolutely try it out.

The speeds can’t be beaten, and the future-proof fiber network is sure to meet your needs for years to come as your bandwidth requirements grow along with consumer technology.

Verizon Fios at a Glance

StatisticVerizon Fios
Price Range$39.99 - $79.99/mo+
Connection Type(s) Fiber
Customer Recommendation Rating on BroadbandNow.com62.5%
ACSI Customer Service Rating73/100
Netflix Ranking2nd
Population Served34,396,280


Jessica Sims

Jessica Sims

Jessica Sims is a technology blogger and broadband industry veteran. Her background as an administrator and customer support employee for a major ISP informs her passion for helping consumers understand their service options.

James Webb

James Webb

James Webb is a tech and gadgets expert with a focus on educational content development. He draws on his background in the startup world to make complicated technologies and topics easy to understand for normal folks.

Questions & Answers


Is 50mbps through FiOS sufficient for just streaming and light internet use for my home?

Absolutely, 50 Mbps download should be more than enough to handle HD streaming, especially if you’re only sharing the connection with one or two other people. The “symmetrical” 50 Mbps upload speeds are the main perk at this tier — most cable/DSL providers will have much slower uploads in the 2–20 Mbps range, even on premium plan with download speeds in the 100–200 Mbps range.

The upload speeds won’t matter so much for streaming and light Internet use, but they’re helpful for uploading files, talking on Skype or Google Hangouts, and other real-time or sharing uses.

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