Frontier readies IPTV launch in Rochester, New York, challenging Charter’s monopoly

Frontier Communications
Image source: Frontier Communications

Frontier Communications plans to launch its Vantage TV service in Rochester, New York, by the end of the year, laying a new challenge to Charter Communications, which entered the market via its acquisition of Time Warner Cable.  

The telco plans to introduce the video service in about three dozen Rochester-area towns.

By offering IPTV in Rochester, Frontier says it can provide local customers with an alternative for video services that has been largely controlled by Time Warner, and now Charter.

"For consumers, it’s absolutely critical to have choice," said Elena Kilpatrick, SVP and general manager of New York Operations, in a WHAM-TV article.

Once Frontier launches the Vantage TV service, a key deciding factor for area consumers will be cost. Frontier has yet to reveal pricing and channel lineups for the video package.

Another question is how Frontier will attract consumers who are increasingly turning to online video options like Amazon and Netflix. Frontier said that it has no intention of competing with customers that favor streaming. Instead, Kilpatrick said Frontier has “a specific channel that would be dedicated to Netflix.”

The pending Rochester launch is just part of a broader initiative Frontier is taking to deliver IPTV throughout its territories.

Earlier this year, the telco revealed plans to leverage its existing fiber-to-the-node (FTTN) network to bring service to 7 million customers across its network territory, including the assets it gained from the acquisition of Verizon's wireline properties this year.

Dan McCarthy, CEO of Frontier, told investors during its first quarter earnings call in February that it plans to “introduce video service to more than 40 markets representing approximately 3 million households over a three- to four-year period.”

In tandem with extending IPTV to more markets, the service provide plans to upgrade its copper plant to provide up to 50 Mbps-capable or higher speeds to additional homes. This included its existing markets and those it entered through the Verizon acquisition where FiOS is not currently available. 

For more:
- WHAM-TV has this article

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