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Surcharge on old routers?

Surcharge on old routers?

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Administrator Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 1,106
Registered: ‎12-09-2014
Message 11 of 58
(28,473 Views)

Some Verizon Fios customers with outdated broadband home routers are being notified by email about a router maintenance surcharge and a discounted option to upgrade to a more current model. Here’s the who, what, when, where and why of it all:

 

Who is affected? Most Fios customers are already using our newer routers and will not be affected. We’re asking customers using older generation routers to upgrade to one of our current models. Our newer routers have wired and wireless speeds that are much faster than those in use by notified customers. If they choose not to upgrade, notified customers will be assessed a $2.80 monthly fee to cover the rising costs of supporting the outdated devices. 

 

What older generation routers are affected? The Aciontec MI424WR Rev A, C, D, E and F, and the Westell 9100EM Rev A and C.

 

What are the options? Notified customers have three choices. 1) They can upgrade by purchasing a refurbished third generation Broadband Home Router from Verizon for $59.99. 2) They can purchase our current model, the state-of-the-art Fios Quantum Gateway at $199.99 or rent it for $10 a month. 3) They can keep using their old router and be assessed a $2.80 monthly maintenance fee.

 

When is this happening? We began notifying customers July 18. The rest will be notified by August 29. Those notified in July will see the first maintenance fee in their September or October bill cycle if they choose not to upgrade their routers. Those notified in August will see the fee in their October bill cycle if they choose not to upgrade.

 

Where and how will I be notified? If you have one of the older routers, you will be notified through email and direct mail.

 

Why is Verizon doing this? A much better experience awaits those who upgrade. On top of being far more reliable, our current routers deliver much faster data speeds than the outdated models. Full router details are on the chart below. Upgrading also comes with much better security, as our newer routers all support the WPA2 protocol which offers much better WiFi security than some of our older models which only support the outdated WEP protocol. Click here for steps on how to change from WEP to WPA2.

 

Model

Connection

Max Data Speed

Gen 1: Actiontec MI424WR

Rev A, C, D

Old model subject to $2.80 fee

Wired CAT5/5e/6

100 Mbps

Wireless

54 Mbps (G)

Coax (MoCa 1.0)

100 Mbps

Gen 2: Westell 9100EM Rev A, C or Actiontec MI424WR Rev E, F

Old model subject to $2.80 fee

Wired CAT5/5e/6

100 Mbps

Wireless

54 Mbps (G)

Coax (MoCa 1.1)

100 Mbps

Gen 3: Actiontec MI424WR

Rev G, I

Current refurbished model - $59.99 purchase

Wired CAT5e/6

1 Gbps

Wireless

130 Mbps (N)

Coax (MoCA 1.1)

175 Mbps

Gen 4: Fios Quantum Gateway G1100

Latest model router - $199 purchase or $10 a month rental

Wired CAT5e/6

1 Gbps

Wireless 2.4 GhHz

Wireless 5.0 GHZ

250 Mbps (AC)

800 Mbps (AC)

Coax (MoCa 2.0)

200 Mbps

 

The routers in question are outdated and some have been in service for as long as ten years which is far older than many of the modern devices that now connect to them. Our tech support centers have a much higher call-in rate for customers with the older routers resulting in higher costs to Verizon to keep these customers in service. The $2.80 fee will help recoup these higher support costs.

 

 



Nilsa
Community Manager

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Posts: 3
Registered: ‎04-20-2015
Message 12 of 58
(28,420 Views)

It is a little misleading to say "The routers in question are outdated and some have been in service for as long as ten years which is far older than many of the modern devices that now connect to them." Some routers are much younger than that. My FIOS router is only 5 years old.

 

You shouldn't charge a monthly fee for something that your customers aren't using. Instead you should offer the option to pay for support on an as-needed basis. That way your customers could decide if they want to pay, say $25 for a 30 minutes call for router support or if they want to upgrade to a newer router.

 

Verizon has no problem with wildy outdated equipment (i.e. set top boxes) as long as they can charge a monthly rental fee that covers the complete cost of the box every 3 months.  

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Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
Platinum Contributor III
Posts: 7,784
Registered: ‎11-04-2008
Message 13 of 58
(28,392 Views)

Intersting thing is the arstechnica article states that this is being directed to people with the BHR routers which preceeded the Actiontec routers.

Anyone getting notified that ahs an Actiontec?

If so, is it a version I or a previous model?


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Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
Platinum Contributor III
Posts: 7,784
Registered: ‎11-04-2008
Message 14 of 58
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Issue is that a customer may not call for a router issue.

Because the router also provides access to guide data and VOD, those services could have an issue that is caused by a router issue.


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Copper Contributor
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Posts: 23
Registered: ‎03-25-2015
Message 15 of 58
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@CRobGauth wrote:

Intersting thing is the arstechnica article states that this is being directed to people with the BHR routers which preceeded the Actiontec routers.

Anyone getting notified that ahs an Actiontec?

If so, is it a version I or a previous model?


This statement makes no sense as every FiOS router (except the super old D-Links if anyone remembers those) are all "BHRs." In fact, there's a table on this page from Verizon showing which BHR family each of the Actiontec's belong to. The Actiontecs didn't supercede the BHRs - they are the BHRs a long with the Westell 9100EM and the Actiontec G1100 Quantum Gateway.

 

The Rev. I's (the red-banded router) belonged to the BHR3 family. The Quantum Gateway (G1100) belongs to the BHR4 family.

 

Ironically, VZ can tout the specs like they did in this thread but it won't make up for the fact that the BHR3 is far more capable than the BHR4.

 

The Quantum Gateway needs a lot of work before they ever pulled this move so unless they have a magic software update ssitting somewhere... well; this will be interesting.

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Copper Contributor
Copper Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-22-2016
Message 16 of 58
(28,120 Views)

Verizon's explanation for the fee makes little sense.

 

When my routers have failed in the past, both Comcast and Verizon would replace them for free, presumably with a model that would be the cheapest and/or easiest to support. Now Verizon is trying to have their cake and eat it too. Their router is old because that's the one they gave me (less than 10 years ago, mind you.) But now I'm on the hook for the maintenance fee from their choice of router. If they don't want to support this router that's their decision, and they were free to replace it. But no, I'm supposed to pay for that option too.

 

So no, I don't swallow their explanation. But I'm used to corporations sugar-coating their fees. My issue is that Verizon is breaking the spirit of my 2 year contract with them. If they want to start charging for routers that's certainly their right. But change the fees when I'm between agreements.

 

I just argued with a service rep for 30 minutes about this and didn't get anywhere- the fee stands, and they didn't offer any kind of credit to offset it. (They did offer to increase my internet speed a little, but I ignored that as a distraction.)

 

Despite my failure, I do encourage people to call and complain. (Don't abuse the service rep, it's Verizon's policy, not theirs.) Maybe they'll think twice before doing this again. And who knows, maybe you'll get further than I did-- I'm not the world's best negotiator, plus I'm still under contract.

 

The $50 router upgrade (instead of the fee) was tempting-- it would pay for itself in less than 2 years. But I'm opting to pay monthly until my contract is up, and then I'm going to shop around. I love Fios itself but customer support has completely failed to help me with 3 significant problems I've had in the last year. This charge is just the latest problem.

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Contributor
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Posts: 1
Registered: ‎07-22-2016
Message 17 of 58
(28,095 Views)

I'm enraged by this. I'm being charged $60 to replace something I've never had an issue with because I might one day have an issue. I was given this router max 6 years ago, so clearly it was already old when I got it. 

 

So basically, Verizon is saying "hey, this person's router might break soon. We don't want to replace it or pay CSRs a living wage, so we'll force them to PAY." It seems like some sort of one-sided revenge plot. I feel like I'm being punished and screwed over for giving them $140 a month for TV/Internet.

 

The admin above me stated that this router is "far older than many of the modern devices that now connect to them." Mine connects to a friggin' ancient Verizon cable box, but I don't see them jumping to replace that any time soon. Nope. They're more than happy to charge me a monthly rental fee for a box that I've paid for many, many, many times over.

 

It's just a shame that there are no alternatives. Comcast is just as evil.

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Gold Contributor VII Gold Contributor VII
Gold Contributor VII
Posts: 2,153
Registered: ‎11-10-2009
Message 18 of 58
(28,023 Views)

@lrowland200 wrote:

I called and talked to customer service.  They say they removed the old router but then said I may have to return it.  I signed up over 8 years ago and paid for the router when signing up.  The Customer Service guy said his records don't go back that far so he could not confirm it!  If I can find the old router I'll return it since it is useless to me.

 

Of course they still got me with some new bogus "regularotry fees" which still raised my bill almost $7. 

What a scam!

 

Larry


8 years ago they did not charge for the router, it was provided and there was no monthly charge for it.  

Odd that they stated you paid for it 8 years ago but if that is so then My read woiuld be that it's your property.

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Gold Contributor VII Gold Contributor VII
Gold Contributor VII
Posts: 2,153
Registered: ‎11-10-2009
Message 19 of 58
(28,020 Views)

@CRobGauth wrote:

Intersting thing is the arstechnica article states that this is being directed to people with the BHR routers which preceeded the Actiontec routers.

Anyone getting notified that ahs an Actiontec?

If so, is it a version I or a previous model?


Read Nilsa's post.
The rev I is not subject to the surcharge.  All earlier model are.

 

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Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
Platinum Contributor III
Posts: 7,413
Registered: ‎12-15-2010
Message 20 of 58
(27,725 Views)

Just waiting for the day Verizon starts charging me for using a 12 year old DSL modem. The DSLAM is even older than the modem 🙂

 

Since BHR is mandatory for TV service to work right, a router replacement and upgrade cycle should be included with a part of the service. No different from telephone service from cable companies mandating the company's cable modem for use (at least with my local company). If they make this apply only to Internet only, big deal. Make support for third party routers more standardized.

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