Verizon introduces connected device tech support for FiOS, DSL subscribers

Verizon (NYSE: VZ) has launched a new customer care service for its FiOS and DSL customers called Tech Support Pro, signaling its desire to further its bond with broadband customers as it faces off with aggressive cable competition in its Northeast wireline market.

FiOS and DSL customers can get the new support service for $10 a month on an a la carte basis.

Customers who combine the service with FiOS Quantum Gateway router will get a special bundle price of $15 a month for both, which equates to a 50 percent discount on Tech Support Pro.

Similar to other service offerings from Frontier and TDS Telecom, Tech Support Pro, Verizon will provide customers access to support for connected devices in the home, from computers, laptops and smartphones, to smart appliances like air conditioners, washer/dryers and door locks.

Playing into its Internet of Things (IoT) and connected device vision, Verizon will also provide support for installation, configuration, and troubleshooting of any device that connects to the customer's router.

Gartner forecast that 6.4 billion connected things will be in use worldwide in 2016, up 30 percent from 2015, and will reach 20.8 billion by 2020. In 2016, the research firm said 5.5 million new things will get connected every day.

Additionally, Tech Support Pro also includes up to five free Mac or Windows PC tune ups a year, 50 GB of data transfer of pictures and music between any storage device, and a smartphone app that provides instant access to support reps through phone or text.

Available on Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Android phones and tablets, the app also allows customers to send pictures of problems to Tech Support Pro reps for faster and more accurate diagnosis.

Being able to provide enhanced support services for devices outside of routers makes sense for Verizon, particularly as the telco looks to retain and attract customers in its now concentrated Northeast wireline footprint where it is facing off with aggressive cable competition from Comcast and Cox, two providers that are ramping up broadband speeds via their existing hybrid fiber coax (HFC) plant.

For more:
- see the release

Related articles:
Verizon's Shammo: We'll make a decision on our data center business in Q3
Verizon's McAdam: We are talking to other cities about FiOS deployments
Verizon drops 13K FiOS internet subs in Q2 due to strike impact