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FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 06, 2014 10:26PM
I'm going to order FiOS because I can. (Also, TWC internet isn't terribly reliable.)

Options -

Internet
15/5 - $49.99 1st year / $69.99 2nd year
15/5 - month to month i think its $74.99

Internet & TV
15/5 & Select HD - $69.99 for 1-2 years. But are there additional fees for equipment?

Internet & TV & Phone
50/25 & Select HD & Unlimited Phone - $79.99 - $250 Gift Card with two year agreement.

---

I think I'm tilting toward triple play since i essentially get faster internet for free. I have no interest in phone. I have little interest in tv but its really not much more than internet only.

Anyone have FiOS in the nyc area? What kind of hidden fees can i expect? Rude price hikes? etc? hm, contract cancellation fees?

thanks!







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/06/2014 10:27PM by mattkime.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Catzilla
Date: March 06, 2014 11:11PM
Check that deal, it probably includes one SD box. HD boxes are $12 a month, whole house DVR is $17 a month. On the bright side, my internet is faster than it's supposed to be.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: deckeda
Date: March 07, 2014 05:39AM
Consider that if the 15/5 meets or exceeds your expectations, you've saved $360 for the first year since you don't care about the TV and phone bundle. And you should always be able to upgrade later.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 07, 2014 06:23AM
Matt,

You pay for set-top boxes and DVR service and such. Always. I don't consider equipment charges and such hidden charges. Verizon makes the costs readily available to on its web site. Increases do come about once a year. It's usually in the form of an increase in something that isn't included as a part of your contract.

If you want to get a better idea of the basic numbers, prior to signing up, jump over to the Verizon website, plug in your data and it will give you an estimate of all the charges. This will include your basic costs, the monthly fees for set-top boxes and, if I remember correctly, even the taxes. Cancellation fees can also be found on the web site.

Unlike what Timewarner says in its misleading ads, Verizon _doesn't_ require youth sign a contract. They do provide an incentive to enter into one. You have to decide for yourself if entering into a contract is worth the incentive. There are various contracts and you may not need to enter into a triple-play package to get a gift card.

My wife and I entered into a two-year contract on a double-play package since we both have phone lines with Vonage. It allowed us to have the 4th TV in our apartment at nearly the same total cost or just a bit more than we paid for just three TVs and a phone line. We received a gift card as a part of the contract. I believe it was $250.00.

Looking at the numbers you provided, I'd first look to see if there is a double-play that gives you 50/25 Internet. I have 50/25 at home and15/5 at my office. The difference is tangible and I'd pay for the extra speed. It's a worthwhile expense. You may have to customize your plan to get it.

If there isn't a double-play with 50/25 Internet, then go for the triple-play. To me, the extra $10.00 is worth it to get the speed.

But, you definitely need to reevaluate the plans available to you. It seems like there should be more of them. I found the double-play I have via searching on the Internet. I wouldn't have the plan without that deep search.

Also, very important, search the Internet for additional discounts. They are out there. On top of the discounted plan, I also got an overall discount on my service. Again, searching the Internet proved critical because I wouldn't have found it otherwise.

Robert
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Bixby
Date: March 07, 2014 06:29AM
You'll pay $5-10/month in taxes, charges etc.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 07, 2014 06:57AM
>> I don't consider equipment charges and such hidden charges.

Eh, if I see a given price in big print and its not the final price then i'm not happy. I'm not sure i'm interest in any of the packages if it means another $10/month rental.

Looks like my choices are -

$8 /mo - standard box. there are a couple of other options that i'm not sure make sense. well, i'm not interested in dvr. i'll have to rethink this. i'm a cheapskate.

Also, this doesn't look like it going to tell me how much taxes are. I'd definitely like to know that.

>>Increases do come about once a year. It's usually in the form of an increase in something that isn't included as a part of your contract.

Can you give examples? This is exactly the sort of thing I want details about. I don't want to sign up for a given rate only for some sort of weird charge to show up a year later.

>>But, you definitely need to reevaluate the plans available to you.

There are plenty of plans available to me. I've only shown the ones i'm interested in.

The triple play plan that i listed is one that i found on slickdeals. Verizon doesn't seem interested in discounting simpler plans beyond the common teaser rates.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 07, 2014 07:11AM
Does anyone get internet only? Are there any taxes or fees on top of that?

If TV would cost $8/mo for a box plus $5-$10 in taxes and fees then i'm out. I was interested in tv when it was about $10/month more but if its more like $23/month when its all said and done then I'm out.

I'm also curious where people notice the speed difference at 50/25 over 15/5. 15/5 is pretty decent. Are you doing a lot of uploading?
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: sekker
Date: March 07, 2014 07:48AM
15/5 is fine so long:
1) You are not sharing your connection with a lot of people in the household
2) You are not uploading a lot of video content

I went to a higher tier internet via my cable company a couple years ago when we had 4 active users in my household. I will likely drop us down to the lowest tier when we are empty nesters in 2 years.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: 3d
Date: March 07, 2014 07:50AM
Quote
mattkime
Does anyone get internet only? Are there any taxes or fees on top of that?

If TV would cost $8/mo for a box plus $5-$10 in taxes and fees then i'm out. I was interested in tv when it was about $10/month more but if its more like $23/month when its all said and done then I'm out.

I'm also curious where people notice the speed difference at 50/25 over 15/5. 15/5 is pretty decent. Are you doing a lot of uploading?

Promotions change all the time and vary by region especially when the service is new to the area. Call the number on the flyer and ask them about the promo packages. Then ask them what the "real" monthly bill is after all the fees and taxes are added. It's a common normal question to ask. Why are you afraid to call?
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Fritz
Date: March 07, 2014 07:50AM
had FiOS. Rude price hike came at the end of the contract. But we had triple play.
If you don't care about phone and TV (and why would anyone? Wish I could dump mine for interwebs only).
Get the single contract, save $350. 15/5 (if it really will be 15/5) will be fine.
I get 18/5 on my 15/5. I seldom, if ever, feel that the bandwidth is killing me.



!#$@@$#!

If there are spelling issues, please pardon, Owen the cat is walking, standing or sleeping on my keyboard.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Acer
Date: March 07, 2014 08:00AM
I asked about Verizon internet-only FiOS using the chat feature on the support website, back when Oomas were cheap on Black Friday last November. I forget the exact figure, but it was within a few dollars of Internet + Phone. I kept the phone with it.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 07, 2014 08:02AM
Quote
3d
Why are you afraid to call?

is that how business is conducted nowadays?

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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: testcase
Date: March 07, 2014 08:23AM
My sister switched from Cablevision (which she hated) to FIOS about four years ago. As a switcher, she got multiple set top boxes, a whole house DVR and, saved about $20 / month over what she paid Cablevision (with a two year price guaranty). After two years, she wasn't complaining re: price so, I doubt the increase was onerous. FIOS service has been substantially better than what Cablevision provided.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Acer
Date: March 07, 2014 08:36AM
Updating myself: I found the figures.

The Verizon chat person said 15/5 Internet-only for $84.99. Compare that to my current $67.99 for Internet + Phone.

Thread I posted on the subject in Nov:
[forums.macresource.com]



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/07/2014 08:40AM by Acer.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 07, 2014 08:47AM
Matt,

Some info:

> >> I don't consider equipment charges and such hidden
> charges.
>
> Eh, if I see a given price in big print and its not the
> final price then i'm not happy. I'm not sure i'm
> interest in any of the packages if it means another
> $10/month rental.

You’re not going to get a 100% straight final numebr from anyone. It always takes a few more minutes to get the numbers. Any TV package will require rental of set-top boxes. If you don’t want to spend the bucks for the rental, then definitely skip TV service. But, what you’ll end up paying more for just Internet service. So, it tends to balance out somewhat.

> Looks like my choices are -
>
> $8 /mo - standard box. there are a couple of other
> options that i'm not sure make sense. well, i'm not
> interested in dvr. i'll have to rethink this. i'm a
> cheapskate.

If you have HD TVs, then you’re going to want HD boxes. If you want DVR service, you can purchase a 3rd party DVR, i.e. TIVO or one of the models in soem recent threads. But, if you go TIVO, it’ll take years to recoup the investment. The otehrs are cheaper but aren’t nearly as capable as a TIVO.

> Also, this doesn't look like it going to tell me how
> much taxes are. I'd definitely like to know that.

Taxes are dependent upon the level of service and you’re location. Taxes are about $10.00 to $11.00 on my bill. Regular service total for 4 TVs, FIOS Extreme and 50/25 Internet is about $155 or so per month. The only time it goes up is when my wife and I rent a FIOS VOD program. Otehrwise, the costs are pretty stable.

> >>Increases do come about once a year. It's usually in
> the form of an increase in something that isn't
> included as a part of your contract.
>
> Can you give examples? This is exactly the sort of
> thing I want details about. I don't want to sign up for
> a given rate only for some sort of weird charge to show
> up a year later.

Just a couple of bucks and it was for the boxes or DVR service or a combination. I forget off the top of my heads. However, the numbers may change significantly when our contract runs out. I’ll definitely evaluate the packages and contracts available about a month before our contract ends. that way, I’ll be ready to modify the package and go month to month or enter into a new contract.

> >>But, you definitely need to reevaluate the plans
> available to you.
>
> There are plenty of plans available to me. I've only
> shown the ones i'm interested in.

You didn’t mention that previously. smiling smiley

>
> The triple play plan that i listed is one that i found
> on slickdeals. Verizon doesn't seem interested in
> discounting simpler plans beyond the common teaser
> rates.

Business as usual for all of the providers.

Robert
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 07, 2014 08:56AM
Sekker,

The answer is very much dependent on how the Internet is used in the household. In this day of streaming and such, 15/5 can be painful for my usage. We have it at my office with just two computers using the Internet 95% of the time. The difference is tangible between how well it functions as compared to the 50/25 I have at home with just two people and two devices in play 95% of the time.

Basic web browsing isn't what does it. Streaming, remote access to offices, data syncing and off-site backups are the hogs. But, that's my usage. Mat's usage may differ than both of ours. So, only he can dictate what speeds are appropriate for his usage.

Robert


15/5 is fine so long:
1) You are not sharing your connection with a lot of people in the household
2) You are not uploading a lot of video content
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mikebw
Date: March 07, 2014 09:21AM
Quote
mattkime
Does anyone get internet only? Are there any taxes or fees on top of that?

If TV would cost $8/mo for a box plus $5-$10 in taxes and fees then i'm out. I was interested in tv when it was about $10/month more but if its more like $23/month when its all said and done then I'm out.

I'm also curious where people notice the speed difference at 50/25 over 15/5. 15/5 is pretty decent. Are you doing a lot of uploading?

I have the 50/25 internet only plan at home (in MD). No taxes or fees. I pay exactly $79.99 a month.

Having the extra speed to me is worth it since I do some work from home (audio and video editing) and we also do a lot of streaming with Hulu/Amazon/ATV (which don't really need THAT much bandwidth, but not having to worry about it is nice).
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: billb
Date: March 07, 2014 09:50AM
Quote
3d
Why are you afraid to call?
Have you called for a mortgage or cable or any number of services or products lately ?
All those car salesmen who were unemployed during the recession didn't disappear into thin air. They're still selling and drooling for every penny of commission. They've got their fangs in your jugular reaching in searching for the blood of your first born.
You can't even give the majority of these leeches your real email address any more.



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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 07, 2014 09:59AM
Bill,

Normally I'd agree with 3D but with Verizon, each call creates a new problem. I still remember when my parents switched to FIOS. I got all of the details perfect for them via the web. The order placed. I confirmed everything via phone. They were supposed to have dual service. Meaning, phones were supposed to stay on copper lines but they'd get FIOS for Internet and TV.

One of the problems is that each call resulted in an unwanted service being added to the order, i.e. equipment protection, virus protection, etc. I found out about the unwanted services via email. So, i'd call to have it removed. 'course, that resulted in one unwanted service being removed and another being added without permission.

It took a slew of calls for me to get them to do it correctly.

But, the big issue was the install itself. They moved her to digital phone service despite our request to stay with dual service. This was a _huge_ issue. Lots of calls and threats of lawsuits. Unfortunately, once it's done, it can't be reversed. So, they were stuck with it.

So, as far as I'm concerned, the less contact you have with a Verizon sales rep, the better you'll be in the end. Customer service and tech support have been great, though. Sales, well, slimy is the word that comes to mind. Kind of like used car and mattress store sales reps. Blech!

Robert
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: 3d
Date: March 07, 2014 11:48AM
Quote
billb
Quote
3d
Why are you afraid to call?
Have you called for a mortgage or cable or any number of services or products lately ?
All those car salesmen who were unemployed during the recession didn't disappear into thin air. They're still selling and drooling for every penny of commission. They've got their fangs in your jugular reaching in searching for the blood of your first born.
You can't even give the majority of these leeches your real email address any more.

I just bought a house a little over a year ago. So yes, I've called these services recently. My current mortgage was applied for over the phone. He was recommended to me by an acquaintance.

Verizon Fios was transferred over from my old place to the new house over the phone. During the call, my monthly package deal was re-evaluated with better pricing. Free extra stb. etc.

Gas and electric service was over the phone as well.

I love shopping and researching online, but it gets to a point after you've found something you like to pick up the phone and nail down the details with a live person. Mattkime is at this point. I know procrastinating when I see it smiling smiley Get on the phone and set that install appointment. You're wasting time!
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 08, 2014 09:21AM
ORDERED!

...kind of. They say they need more info from me and that i should call M-F 8am-6pm. OR I'll get an email within 24 hours. Mystery!!

As it turned out, there was a nice (and barely noticeable) feature that showed the monthly total with taxes and fees.

15/5 internet - an additional $0.99. (annoying but acceptable)
Triple Play - advertised as $79.99/mo. Add in an $8 box so you can actually SEE the tv content and an additional $13 in fees. Suddenly the total is $102/month.

Sorry, but i just don't think companies should be able to play games like that.



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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Fritz
Date: March 08, 2014 09:49AM
Quote
mattkime
15/5 internet - an additional $0.99. (annoying but acceptable)
Triple Play - advertised as $79.99/mo. Add in an $8 box so you can actually SEE the tv content and an additional $13 in fees. Suddenly the total is $102/month.

Sorry, but i just don't think companies should be able to play games like that.

exactly what p'd me off about FiOS. You'll love it for at least the length of the contract.

When I changed back to OOL/CV the $95 was stated as all in, 2 DVR/STB, modem, taxes, blah, blah, blah.
The DVR is slow and dumb at times as it isn't local but clouded in their NSA secured sausage factory.
But other than that …...



!#$@@$#!

If there are spelling issues, please pardon, Owen the cat is walking, standing or sleeping on my keyboard.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Janit
Date: March 08, 2014 09:59AM
I have been considering FIOS in NJ as well, which has been offering similar promotional packages.

If TV is not a big deal for you, root around in the build-it-yourself interface for the cheapest triple-play package, and see if there is a lower tier of tv service available (which would come without the $250 card promotion). Consider whether it is worth it to try the promotional package and then switch to a lower tier at the end of 2 years.

edit

Sorry for the after-the-fact post. Can you describe where to find the feature that makes it possible to see the total fees? It would be greatly appreciated, as I have not ordered my own service in NJ yet.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/08/2014 10:03AM by Janit.
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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 08, 2014 10:07AM
Well, I just experienced Verizon's customer service - I had to talk to three people but at least i got an install date.

They claimed that they needed to perform "credit verification" - like hell they need me on the phone for that when i've already entered my SSN.

I really think the point of the finishing on the phone was to pressure me into getting more services. "What? No Tv? You need to get the TV!!!"

Ug, I finally got to the point where i simply said, "I want what I ordered"

(At one point she said I could get faster internet for another $5/mo. I said that i thought it was an additional $10 a month. She checked and i was right.)

How $%#$%$ obnoxious!!!



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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: mattkime
Date: March 08, 2014 10:18AM
You select the plan that you want and then you'll go through several screens where they try to get you to tack on garbage. (okay, you also select your tv box)

then there's a screen where they show the monthly fees and the numbers are on a blue background. look at that screen carefully. there's a small link that says "see your monthly bill" or something similar. that will show the fees.

(Its proof they can do it, and proof that they don't want to.)

Quote
Janit
Sorry for the after-the-fact post. Can you describe where to find the feature that makes it possible to see the total fees? It would be greatly appreciated, as I have not ordered my own service in NJ yet.



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Re: FiOS - Help me game the system
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 09, 2014 07:11PM
Matt,

That's proof of what I said earlier in the thread. You can pick and choose and get an estimate of your plane. Verizon provides you the means to do it. Proof that they don't want to provide the info would be not giving you the link at all.

Robert
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