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Teach me about U-Verse (and fiber in general)

GooeyGooey Registered User regular
If you have no idea what U-Verse is, click here. (Verizon's service is FiOS.)


So I'm moving to an area in a few weeks where I can get AT&T's new fiber optic service, U-Verse. I hate cable companies for a myriad of reasons and I'm looking at this thinking "TV with HD/DVR, 300+ channels, and 6-down-1-up internet for cheaper than I pay for my current inadequate service? Yes, please!" But is it too good to be true?

If you have U-Verse, or know someone who does, speak up. What are the drawbacks? I know sometimes they have to cut the copper lines to your house, etc. Do I keep the coax in the home or am I going to have to rewire it all? Are there any hidden fees, taxes, etc? How is the service in general? Is the UI on the DVR okay? Outages? Breakages? Customer Service? ...Awesomeness?

Let me know.

Gooey on
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Posts

  • GihgehlsGihgehls Registered User regular
    edited February 2008
    I don't know how U-Verse is, but if it is anything like FiOS they will install a box on the side of your place called an ONT or optical network terminator. Fiber comes into this box, coax, phone, and ethernet come out. They also install a battery backup for the ONT. The coax and phone come out of the ONT and plug into your house wiring, so nothing to worry about there. They also install one ethernet jack into the room of your choice.

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  • SnowconeSnowcone Registered User
    edited February 2008
    Most Uverse is FTTN (Fiber to the Node) versus Fios' FTTP (Fiber to the premesis). What that means is that AT&T was cheap and ran fiber most of the way, but the last run to your home is copper. This is true in most installs. In many new neighborhoods AT&T is going ahead and running fiber all the way. This really means nothing as they don't offer a higher level of service to FTTP customers.

    I'm not currently a U-Verse user, but I've done enough research to know quite a bit about it. Expect the install to take between 3 and 8 hours. The tech will install an RG (Residential Gateway) and any number of set top boxes. The STBs can run over coax over Cat 5 if you have it. The main STB is the only one that is a DVR and it can currently record 4 video streams (1 HD, 3 SD). In the near future that is slated to change to at least 2 HD, 2 SD. Another upcoming feature is whole home DVR functionality where additional STBs can play live content or content stored on the main DVR.

    IIRC the RG is a 2WIRE device that acts as a modem/route combo device and does have wireless built into it although the default config is unsecured so you'll want to fix that.

    There have been mixed reports on HD quality with some reporting that AT&T is over compressing the signal. Others say it is just fine. There is also an outstanding issue with the HDMI connection in some cases.

    If you want to ask some more specific questions, head on over to the forum at http://www.uverseusers.com There are lots of install techs and other CSRs that frequent the forums along with a massive customer base.

    I've been plotting the move to U-Verse for a while now, but I really need multiple HD streams so until that and whole home DVR drop, I'm still a TWC customer.

    Hope that helps.

  • unpurposedunpurposed Registered User regular
    edited February 2008
    I had U-Verse for a couple of months and then just ended up canceling it because it was more of a hassle than anything else.

    Connection would drop randomly leaving me with no TV or Internet. I mean, there were a slew of problems that had me calling the technician at least 10 times during the entire time I had it. Just be careful and make sure that the technician who installs it does it right.

  • bashbash Registered User regular
    edited February 2008
    I typed some words about U-verse in comparison to cable and FiOS over in this thread.

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