Economist Paul Krugman has an opinion piece in The New York Times where he attempts to call out Verizon’s failure to invest in its FiOS network as the reason for the company’s unionized workers discontent with the broadband provider.
Yes, Verizon hasn’t been in the news lately for deploying FiOS, a project it started two decades ago in response to competition from cable-based broadband providers such as Comcast and Time Warner, but it cannot be said that Verizon has stopped investing in its networks. Verizon has been rolling out a mobile broadband network that reaches over 90 percent of the nation. The company is also still competing with the likes of Comcast and Time Warner not only in terms of deploying broadband and special access services, but also as a media company.
My impression when I first read Professor Krugman’s piece was that he must have taken a nap over the past year. Verizon recently acquired AOL and is also making a play for Yahoo! Verizon wants to optimize the traction its broadband network has by making it a platform for AOL and Yahoo!’s content. AOL also has an advertising platform that Verizon can leverage on its broadband network as well.
Professor Krugman’s observation took me by surprise and also took me back to when my son was born, just around the time FiOS deployment was heating up. The Chuckster is now 14 and looking forward to high school. I suggest Professor Krugman start being a little more forward looking as well.