Verizon Fios TV Review for 2019

If you live on the east coast, Verizon Fios TV gives you a lot of channels starting out and stays strong through its higher-tier packages. But extra fees add up and make them a pricey TV option.

Overall Rating

Pros

Cons

Verizon Fios provides some of the best internet service available - especially if you’re comparing fiber-optic providers. But, they also provide TV and phone service through the same system, as well. 

And with a high starting channel count in their base TV package, plus relatively affordable monthly rates per channel, Verizon Fios TV looks pretty attractive. But is it really? 

Well, extra fees quickly add up and their DVR options are pricey for less than you can get at cheaper rates with other providers – as we’ll discuss in more depth soon. 

In the meantime, let’s start by dissecting Fios TV’s packages and pricing to see if Verizon Fios’s TV service may be worth the money for you.

Verizon Fios Packages + Pricing

Package Channel Count Price View packages
Preferred 280+ $74.99/mo. View Packages
Extreme 350+ $79.99/mo. View Packages
Ultimate 425+ $89.99/mo. View Packages
Custom TV Varying $64.99/mo. View Packages
Fios TV Local 15+ $12.99/mo. View Packages

Glancing at Verizon Fios TV’s prices can make you cringe – especially if you compare them to other TV service providers.

TV Giants like Comcast Xfinity’s cable TV service, or DIRECTV’s satellite start out at lower price points. For instance, you can get over 100 channels from Xfinity for about $40 bucks a month, or 160+ from DIRECTV for $40/month. 

But with that said, both of those options have a lot fewer channels than Fios TV. Verizon actually comes out pretty well in the price-per-channel game when you compare them on that count to Xfinity and DIRECTV: 

  • Xfinity’s closest plan: 260+ channels for $104.99/month
  • DIRECTV’s closest plan: 250+ channels for $60/month. 

So at a base price, Verizon Fios comes in higher – but you get a lot more channels in exchange. The downside to that is if you’re looking for a lower-channel, lower-priced option, Fios TV just doesn’t have it. 

That’s when it makes sense to go with Xfinity or DIRECTV. 

Part of this reason can be explained away simply – Verizon Fios TV doesn’t do contracts at all. Xfinity has 1-, 2-year, and no-contract options, but if you skip out you’ll pay an additional $10/month no matter the plan. 

And DIRECTV requires a 2-year contract – with a huge price hike at the start of the 2nd year. 

Extra fees

Channel count aside, Verizon Fios TV really gouges you when it comes to fees:

  • Broadcast Fee – $4.49/month
  • Regional Sports Network fee – $7.89/month
  • CableCARD – $4.99/month
  • Digital Adapter – $7.99/month
  • HD Set-Top Box – $12/month/TV
  • Router charge – $10/month
  • DVR Service – $12/month
  • Multi-room DVR service – $15/month
  • DVR service with Enhanced DVR – $22/month
  • DVR service with Premium DVR – $32/month

That’s a lot of extra fees – even with just 1 TV, you’re looking at potentially an extra $59.36 (with Enhanced DVR) a month on top of your package rates!

Then add on installation costs upfront – at least $99, up to $160 – and your wallet is hurting. 

You’re paying for those channels, that’s for sure – and extra fees added on rockets your monthly rate well past Xfinity and DIRECTV.

Bundles + Deals

Sample Bundle Includes Price View plan
Fios Triple Play Gigabit Connection + Fios TV Test Drive + Phone $79.99/mo. View plan
Fios Triple Play Gigabit Connection + Preferred HD TV + Phone $94.99/mo. View plan
Fios Triple Play Gigabit Connection + Extreme HD TV + Phone $109.99/mo. View plan

At least Fios has some decent bundling options. 

To get Fios TV, you have to get hooked up to their Fiber network, and with that in place you can get their awesome Fiber internet speeds, plus a home phone, alongside one of their TV packages – with about $20 bucks a month in savings. 

Plus, that initial Triple Play package for $79.99 a month gives you their “Fios TV Test Drive.” Test Drive is a 60-day trial of their highest-tier plan - 425+ channels - plus some tech that takes note of what you watch and recommends the best package for you for after your 60-day trial run.

Pretty cool, and for the same price as the standalone Extreme HD TV package. 

The downside, however, with Fios’s bundles – you need to sign a 2-year agreement, with ETFs of up to $500 if you cancel before its end. 

Verizon Fios TV Channel Lineup

Package Sample Channels* View more
Preferred HD TNT, Discovery, Animal Planet View more
Extreme HD FX, E!, BBC America View more
Ultimate HD SHOWTIME, STARZ, IFC View more
Custom TV Varies w/ package View more
Fios TV Local ABC, PBS, CW View more

*Not representative of all channels. Input zip code here to see more examples. 

The channels you get will – news flash – vary depending on your package. That said, there are plenty, including the popular cable ones (ESPN, Comedy Central, AMC, etc). 

  • Preferred HD starts you off with the basics: ESPN, TNT, etc. – plus regional sports. You also get the Fios TV on Demand library. 
  • Extreme HD dramatically increases your channel count, adding in sports and fan favorites like NFL Network, BBC America, FX, and Sundance TV. Unfortunately, though, many of the added channels are fluff – but it’s only an extra $5 bucks more per month than Preferred, which can be worth it for the channels mentioned.
  • Ultimate HD boosts you even higher, adding in more sports (like Fox College Sports Network and ESPN Deportes) as well as premiums like SHOWTIME, CINEMAX, EPIX, and the Movie Channel. 

Custom TV package

Package Sample Channels* View plan
Action & Adventure FX, TNT, AMC View plan
Sports & News ESPN, Fox Sports, MSNBC View plan
Kids & Pop TBS, Nickelodeon, USA View plan
News & Variety Fox News Channel, CNN, Discovery View plan
Infotainment & Drama Investigation Discovery, National Geographic, USA View plan
Lifestyle & Reality Lifetime, E!, VH1 View plan
Home & Family HGTV, Food Network, A&E View plan

*Not representative of all channels. Input zip code here to see more examples. 

Custom TV gives you 7 Channel Packs to choose from, with varying counts – check here to find out – but suffice to say there are plenty. Unfortunately, you can’t mix-and-match; but, each pack is just $64.99/month for a solid selection of channels in your chosen genre.

HD & Premiums

Pack Price View pack
CINEMAX $15/mo. View plan
EPIX $15/mo. View plan
HBO $15/mo. View plan
SHOWTIME $15/mo. View plan
STARZ / ENCORE $15/mo. View plan
Spanish Language $16/mo. View plan

Verizon comes in a bit short on HD channels – especially when compared to the overall count – , but the ones they do have are included for no extra charge: 

  • Preferred: 105+ HD
  • Extreme: 130+ HD
  • Ultimate: 160+ HD

And when it comes to premiums, you get a handful at the Ultimate level, and the rest are about $15 a month added on. That’s about average, but you can get some of those for cheaper with DIRECTV. 

Sports add-ons

Pack Price View pack
Sports Pass $14/mo. View plan
Fox Soccer Plus $14.99/mo. View plan

Again, Fios TV comes in a little on the low side for additional sports packages – just Fox Soccer and Sports Pass. That said, if you’re a super fan, you can grab the Sports & News (Custom) package for your base plan. 

Do that and you’ll get sports channels like: 

  • Big Ten 1 and 2
  • Big Ten Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN News
  • ESPNU
  • Fox Business Network
  • Fox Sports 1 + 2
  • MLB Network
  • NBA TV
  • NFL Network
  • NHL Network
  • SEC Network (National)
  • SEC Network (Overflow)
  • And more

So while lacking in highly sport-specific packages (check fuboTV for that), Verizon Fios TV will cover most of your bases – if you’re willing to give up other channels to do so.

Locals

You can grab local channels with Fios’s smallest (and cheapest) base package: Fios TV Local. Rather than having to use a digital HD antenna, you just tap in by fiber. It includes the basic locals and educationals for your region: CBS, ABC, PBS… etc. 

On-demand

You get access to the 140,000+ strong On Demand library starting at the Preferred HD level – but no access for Custom or Local. 

While there is Pay-Per-View content and paid On Demand movies, games, and subscriptions, you can get a lot of content for free – just look for the Fios logo denoting their “free” status. 

In any case, that’s a pretty huge library of content with a lot of new movies and shows constantly being added.

Verizon Fios Equipment + Features

DVR Number of simultaneous recordings Storage capacity Price
Fios One Enhanced Up to 6 Up to 100 HD $22/mo.
Fios One Premium Up to 12 Up to 200 HD $32/mo.

We’re going to start off with the DVR - and it’s pricey. Starting at $22 bucks a month, you only get 100 hours of HD recording capacity. Being able to record up to 6 channels simultaneously isn’t bad, but you can get a lot more for cheaper with DISH’s Hopper 3 (500 hours, 16 simultaneous).

And $32 bucks a month for 200 HD hours and 12 simultaneous channels? Ouch. Again, the Hopper 3 blows them out of the water.  

The Fios One’s redeeming features are that it’s more than just a DVR – you get a voice remote to change channels, fast forward, rewind, search, play recorded or On Demand shows, etc. 

And it’s integrated with Netflix and can be hooked up by Wi-Fi to the mini-units required for multi-room DVR service.

Mobile TV App

Fios TV’s mobile app is pretty good as well, allowing you to stream On Demand titles across iOS, Android, and even Amazon devices. Plus, you can watch live TV through it, or download shows ahead of time in prep for no internet service (like a vacation in the Western states). 

Verizon Fios TV Customer Service

Verizon proves itself to be a consistent pack-leader for customer service year after year. For TV, the only provider to beat Fios this year (by ACSI numbers) was AT&T’s U-verse TV – by 1 point. 

J.D. Power is also happy to shower Verizon with accolades, with an easy win in all categories. 

Fios TV’s customer support center is basic but clean, with guides for common issues (“All Fios TV channels out”; “Some Fios TV channels out”), as well as walk-throughs for other issues. 

If you need to contact them, they’ve got a few methods to do so: 

Verizon Fios TV Recap

Overall, Verizon Fios TV provides a strong showing. However, despite high channel counts, the extra fees in addition to the high starting price make them a costly investment. Their DVR, too, is expensive in spite of cool extra features like voice remote and Netflix integration. 

So if you’ve got a little money to play with and like multi-functional tech, or you’re looking to bundle fiber internet with TV – check out Verizon Fios TV. 

But if you’re not in Verizon’s coverage area, you’re looking for lower channel counts at a cheaper cost, or you want a better DVR – check out Xfinity TV, DIRECTV, or DISH Network.

Q&A

What channel is MTV on Verizon Fios TV?

According to TV Channel Lists, MTV is on channel 210 for SD, and 710 for High Definition. MTV2 is channels 211 and 711, respectively. MTVU is on channel 212, with only a Standard Definition option. 

What channel is TNT on Verizon Fios TV?

TNT is on channel 51 for Standard Definition, and 551 for HD.

Luke Pensworth Written by: Luke Pensworth

Luke is the managing editor and site manager of Dailywireless. As a wireless enthusiast/consumer, he reviews a lot of services based on his own experience. Disgruntled as he may be, he tries to keep his articles as honest as possible.

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