Category Archives: Verizon

Verizon supports controversial rule that could help Google Fiber expand

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | WIN-Initiative)

Verizon is supporting a controversial rule that would help network operators deploy fiber much more quickly by giving them faster access to utility poles.

So-called "One Touch Make Ready" rules let ISPs make all of the necessary wire adjustments on utility poles themselves instead of having to wait for other providers like AT&T and Comcast to send work crews to move their own wires. Some cities passed their own One Touch Make Ready rules in order to help Google Fiber compete against incumbents. When Nashville passed such a rule, it was sued by Comcast and AT&T. When Louisville passed a similar rule, it was sued by AT&T and Charter.

Incumbent broadband providers usually think alike when it comes to regulation and competition. But Verizon, which is planning to deploy a lot of fiber to support its wireless network, has asked the Federal Communications Commission to allow One Touch Make Ready in states that follow FCC pole attachment processes.

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Crunch Report | Uber CEO Takes Leave of Absence

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is taking a leave of absence, Verizon closes on its $4.5 billion acquisition of Yahoo and Marissa Mayer is leaving the company, Tim Cook discusses more of Apple’s car plans and Amazon launches Prime Reload. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

Yahoo and AOL are now a Verizon subsidiary called “Oath”

(credit: David Ramos/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Verizon today said it has completed its $4.48 billion acquisition of Yahoo's operating business and formed a new subsidiary called "Oath" that includes both Yahoo and AOL.

Oath is "a diverse house of more than 50 media and technology brands that engages more than a billion people around the world," Verizon's announcement said. (Yahoo alone has previously said it already had more than 1 billion monthly users.)

Advertising is key to Verizon's plans for Oath. Since Verizon is a home Internet provider and the largest wireless carrier in the US, its access to Internet subscribers' browsing histories could help boost the Yahoo/AOL advertising business. The Republican-led Congress and President Donald Trump recently wiped out rules that would have made it harder for ISPs to use their customers' browsing history to serve personalized advertising.

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With path cleared to close Yahoo deal, Verizon prepares the pink slip printer

Enlarge / Photo by Silicon Valley Historical Association/Gado/Getty Images. (credit: SVHA/Gado/GettyImages)

Yahoo stockholders today approved the terms of the acquisition of the company's Internet business by Verizon for $4.48 billion. What once was Yahoo's primary business will be merged with Verizon's AOL unit to create a business to be called "Oath."

With that deal on final approach, many Yahoo and AOL employees may be uttering oaths of their own as Verizon prepares to purge about 2,100 workers from the combined organization, according to a Wall Street Journal report. That amounts to about 15 percent of the combined workforce of the two businesses. The layoffs are expected to be spread evenly across AOL and Yahoo staff, and few of the cuts are expected to affect engineers and product teams.

The layoffs mark the latest series of cuts for both Yahoo and AOL, which have both been shedding employees in anticipation of the deal. AOL cut about 500 employees late last year, and Yahoo is down from about 14,000 employees in 2010 to roughly 8,100 as of the end of last year.

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Verizon is forced to fix 15,000 “double poles” and other network problems

Enlarge / Dangling bits of old poles hanging off new poles, from a union complaint against Verizon in October 2015. (credit: CWA)

Verizon and a union representing its workers have reached a settlement requiring the company to fix thousands of problems in areas of Pennsylvania where it hasn't upgraded its copper network to fiber.

The settlement of the union's complaint "will require the company to repair and replace bad cable, defective equipment, faulty back-up batteries, and to take down 15,000 double telephone poles," the Communications Workers of America (CWA) said Friday.

Double poles occur when "Verizon has failed to move its equipment from an old pole that was replaced with a new one by another utility (e.g., the electric company)," the CWA said. "In many cases, these are dangerous conditions—poles are falling, leaning, rotting, partially cut off, etc." 

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Verizon reportedly tried to buy #2 cable company Charter, was rejected

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Spencer Platt)

Verizon recently tried to buy Charter Communications for "well over $100 billion," but the US' second biggest cable company rejected the offer, according to a New York Post article yesterday. Charter rejected the offer "because it was too low—and because Charter was not ready to sell," the Post wrote, quoting anonymous sources.

Rumors about Verizon trying to buy Charter surfaced in January, a month after Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said that a Verizon/Charter merger would make "industrial sense." In mid-April, McAdam said that he'd be willing to have merger talks with just about any company, including Comcast, the country's biggest cable operator. But he said that no deals were imminent and argued that no cable company could match Verizon's fiber network.

Those comments may have come after Charter rejected Verizon's offer. The Verizon offer to Charter was made "in recent months," the Post wrote. Chairman John Malone of Liberty Media, Charter's largest shareholder with a 19 percent ownership stake, is wary of the tax implications of a deal with Verizon and wants to give Charter more time to finish integrating its new Time Warner Cable subsidiary, the report said.

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Verizon CEO confirms company’s plan to launch a streaming TV service

 Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam confirmed the company’s plans to launch an over-the-top streaming service later this year, according to a report from Variety, citing remarks the CEO made at a telecom conference in Boston this week. Verizon (which owns TechCrunch parent company AOL), will use the combined platform of AOL and Yahoo – and their 1.3 billion users – to test the new… Read More