Can you say the word "BUNDLE?"
One of my good friends has had FIOS now for over 6 months.
For $109.95/month he gets:
1. 15 meg Internet downloads
2. About 400 regular TV channels (He pays an extra $10 for some HBO feeds)
3. Local phone service with Caller ID, Voice Mail, and several other telephone features.
4. Unlimited domestic long-distance calling.
HD channels are available, for extra cost, but he is more into audio than video, so he has not made the transition to HDTV.
And VOD, in both SD and HD are available for prices ranging from $1.99/movie to $4.99/movie.
So tell me, "bootman," how much a month are you now paying for 1,2,3 and 4 above? And what is the download speed from your ISP?
My friend lives in the Tidewater Virginia area, and Verizon customers ordering FIOS now have to wait a month or more for a hookup, so at present, Verizon cannot keep up with demand for FIOS.
And another friend who worked for GTE before they were acquired by Bell Atlantic and became Verizon tells me their FIOS sales rates are actually better in lower-income neighborhoods than in the "ritzy" neighborhoods. And he tells me Verizon is frantically working to built out their infrastructure to deliver 100 meg downloads to all their FIOS customers in less than two years. They, too, believe the silver discs will go the way of vinyl discs and they want to have the infrastructure in place to deliver the download.
And if you are Sony or Fox, do you really care who delivers the download as long as you get paid for the download? Verizon expects their VOD business to grow exponentially over the next several years, they are going to offer both SD and HD downloads, and they are planning to charge a slight premium for the video enthusiasts who will view nothing but an HD download.
So, yes, I see a huge demand for all these services at the above prices from the "Walmart crowd." But the "Wallies" will probably not pay the extra buck or so for the HD download - They will be quite happy with an SD download.
Think about it - All Verizon has to do is deliver a VOD that looks as good as a regular DVD to a "Wallie."