TDS offers 100 Mbps option in Tennessee, Minnesota FTTH markets

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TDS Telecom (NYSE: TDS), the wireline subsidiary of Telephone and Data Systems, Inc., is offering its fiber to the home (FTTH) broadband customers in Halls and La Vergne, Tenn., and Monticello, Minn., a new 100 Mbps speed option.

It did not reveal pricing of the new offering, which puts it on a competitive footing with local telco AT&T (NYSE: T) in La Vergne and Fibernet in Monticello, which today offer 10-25 Mbps and 50-100 Mbps speeds, respectively. 

The 100 Mbps service is part of an ongoing multimillion-dollar upgrade it has been conducting over the past nine months of its fiber optic network.

Offered only today as part of a bundle with its TDS TV IPTV product, TDS said the 100 Mbps product is a response to the growth in Internet bandwidth usage. According to a recent Sandvine report, Internet bandwidth usage in North America has increased 39 percent year-over-year since 2012.

"We are seeing more customers inquire about higher speeds which led us to get the 100 Mbps product out," said Shane West, vice president of consumer marketing and product development at TDS Telecom, in an e-mail to FierceTelecom. "But rolling that product out (and higher speeds soon) is also about market leadership."

West added that they "offer speeds from 1 Mbps to 100 Mbps depending on whether the address has copper or fiber facilities to it and are beginning to look at speeds well beyond that."

TDS has deployed crews to work through next summer to expand the services to more customers in Farragut and Halls.

Besides offering higher speeds, TDS has been also enhancing its IPTV service, which it is now introducing in Halls, Tenn. In May, the telco upgraded its Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) Mediaroom platform to version 2.3 to enhance the customer's viewing experience. 

TDS may have been more conservative about its IPTV rollout than other telcos like AT&T and CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), but it has been making progress with the service. In January 2012, the telco set an ambitious goal to bring IPTV to 19 markets.

While it has yet to reach that goal, each quarter the telco has reported that in areas where it does offer TDS TV it is seeing greater triple play adoption. During Q1 2013, TDS added 200 broadband and 1,100 TV customers, respectively.

For more:
- see the release

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