CenturyLink ends Comcast's monopoly in Minneapolis with launch of Prism IPTV, 1 Gbps service

CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) is officially now offering its Prism IPTV service in the Minneapolis market, ending incumbent video provider Comcast's (NASDAQ: CMCSA) monopoly position there.

In May, the Minneapolis City Council approved CenturyLink's video franchise agreement.

Under the terms of that agreement, CenturyLink previously said it plans to bring the service to about 15 percent of the city during the next two years. Initially, CenturyLink will deliver the Prism TV service in a "limited" basis to parts of all 13 wards in the city. Ultimately, the telco's goal is to equip the entire city with the service by 2020--but that is not a commitment.

According to a KSTP.com report, the IPTV service will be available in 11 areas of the city including: Camden, Northeast Minneapolis, near North Minneapolis, Central Minneapolis, University, Calhoun-Isle, Phillips, Longfellow, Powderhorn, Southwest Minneapolis and Nokomis.

The new IPTV service will complement CenturyLink's 1 Gbps fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network that it started providing to both residential and business customers in the Twin Cities last year. CenturyLink plans to extend the 1 Gbps service to over 100,000 homes and 40,000 businesses by the end of this summer.

Minneapolis is just one of several cities where CenturyLink is rolling out IPTV. Other recent roll outs include Salt Lake City and Portland, Ore. The action will pit CenturyLink against Google Fiber in Portland, which is working out the details with city officials to bring its 1 Gbps broadband and TV service to the city.

IPTV and 1 Gbps service continue to be big priorities for CenturyLink.

While the telco came to the video game later than its larger ILEC counterparts AT&T (NYSE: T) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ), the service provider has been making progress with its rollouts, adding 8,000 new Prism TV customers in the first quarter. As of the end of the first quarter, CenturyLink had a total of 249,000 Prism TV subscribers, up year-over-year from 199,000 subscribers in the same period a year ago.

The company is being no less aggressive on the 1 Gbps FTTP front. With a focus on building out the 10 markets it has announced so far, the telco plans to reach 700,000 residential homes with 1 Gbps service by the end of the year.

For more:
KSTP.com has this article

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