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Verizon Takes Quantum Leap In Philly

Verizon Communications has selected Philadelphia, home to incumbent cable operator Comcast, as the next launch site for FiOS Quantum TV, a new pair of service tiers that feature souped up whole-home DVRs, including an premium option that lets customers record as many as 12 shows at once and store up to 200 hours of HD video. 

Starting with an initial debut in Philadelphia on Wednesday (May 14), Verizon said it will roll it out in phases, with full access to Southeastern Pennsylvania and Delaware expected by early next week.

Verizon debuted its FiOS Quantum TV offerings last month in Dallas and Harrisburg and Pittsburgh, Pa., and more recently in Tampa. It expects to phase it into all other FiOS TV markets over the next few months.

The telco’s new FiOS Quantum TV-Premium and FiOS Quantum TV-Enhanced Service tiers both feature the Arris-made Verizon Media Server (VMS), a device that’s outfitted with six tuners and 1 terabyte of DVR storage – enough for about 100 hours of HD video – that can be paired up with client devices that hang off a MoCA-based home network. All of those devices are capable of supporting trick-play functions (pause, rewind, fast-forward, etc.). The Premium-level bundle ties together the functions of two VMSs, giving customers access to twelve tuners – enough to record 12 shows at once – and 2 TB/200 HD hours of DVR storage.

A new FiOS Quantum TV customer with five TVs who orders the Enhanced Service would pay $10 more per month than the charge for standard FiOS TV using a traditional multi-room DVR;  a new customer with five TVs who orders the Premium Service would pay $20 more per month,  Verizon said.

Comcast, meanwhile, has been rolling out its X1 platform, an IP-capable service that features a cloud-based user interface and a local HD-DVR that record up to five shows at once. In Philly, Comcast has also introduced other cloud-based video enhancements, including a cloud DVR and in-home live TV streaming for tablets, smartphones and PCs.

Among other area competitors, Dish Network’s Hopper HD-DVR with the Super Joey can record up to eight shows at once,  while DirecTV’s Genie whole-home DVR can currently record up to five shows at the same time.