Verizon Communications Inc. is investing billions in replacing copper phone lines with optical fiber, for TV service and faster Internet speeds. It is alone among major U.S. phone companies in doing this. But the project only covers about two-thirds of Verizon's local-phone territory.
On a call with investors and analysts Friday, chief financial officer Fran Shammo indicated that if broadband speeds are going to improve in non-FiOS areas, it will be through Verizon Wireless' new "4G LTE" data network.
QUESTION: Can you update us on your need or interest in investing in improving broadband in non-FiOS areas?
RESPONSE (CFO Shammo): Obviously our strategy is to complete the 18 million (home) build for FiOS and transition that. And as you know, we've really concentrated on investing in FiOS and curtailing the investment in the copper network and moving people from copper to FiOS. And that is a big strategic initiative that (CEO Lowell McAdam) has set out for the business to accomplish.
Now those lines that are outside that FiOS and outside of any potential of passing ever with FiOS -- we will continue to be competitive in this area but I think it's going to be around LTE. We're not going to invest a lot of capital in the copper core network in those outlying areas. But I think we have a strategic bundle that we can go into those households with, give them a better experience than what they're currently having on their DSL line from a bundling of the wireless portfolio that we have. So that's the strategy that we're going to deploy.