At a Glance

Type of Service

Cable

Type of Service

Fiber

Channel Count

620/165 HD

Channel Count

425+/140 HD

Price

$64.95-$109.95/month

Price

$64.99-$89.99/month

Equipment Fees

$10/month

Equipment Fees

Up to $32/month

Installation Fee

Yes

Installation Fee

Starts at $90

Contract

None

Contract

None

Customer Satisfaction

3.26/5

Customer Satisfaction

3.66/5

Type of Service

Cable

Channel Count

620/165 HD

Price

$64.95-$109.95/month

Equipment Fees

$10/month

Installation Fee

Yes

Contract

None

Customer Satisfaction

3.26/5

Type of Service

Fiber

Channel Count

425+/140 HD

Price

$64.99-$89.99/month

Equipment Fees

Up to $32/month

Installation Fee

Starts at $90

Contract

None

Customer Satisfaction

3.66/5

Data effective 2/15/2017. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers are available in all areas.

You know what you want—great, reliable TV with plenty of choice and flexibility at an affordable price. The hard part is figuring out which provider can deliver on those expectations. That’s where the team at CableTV.com can help. We have a wealth of reviews and expert knowledge at our fingertips to draw comparisons, break down where each provider excels, and give you plenty of at-a-glance information so you can choose a package and provider that’ll fit your priorities.

See what Optimum and Verizon Fios plans are available in your area:

 


Should you choose Optimum or Verizon Fios as your TV service provider?

 

The Verdict

Optimum

Optimum offers a large channel selection, a great variety of international programming, and fast internet service. The DVR system is also capable of recording a ton of shows at once. However, the biggest problem with the service is availability: if you don’t live in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, or Pennsylvania, you can’t get it. The company also scored at or near the bottom in every category in our customer satisfaction survey, so keep that in mind when purchasing. Still, if you like a lot of variety in your viewing options, Optimum might be the way to go.

Verizon Fios

Verizon Fios is also limited in availability, though not to the same degree as Optimum. If you ever need to move, you’re more likely to be able to keep Verizon than Optimum. The fees for Verizon Fios can be quite high, especially for installation and the Multi-Room DVR. Apart from that, though, it’s hard to go wrong with Fios. You get a robust channel selection, a strong DVR system, excellent reliability, and blazing fast internet speeds when you bundle services. You also get a relationship with a company that scores high across the board in customer satisfaction. If any of these factors are important to you, Verizon Fios is your network.


Optimum

Overall Customer Rating

3.26 Stars (3.26 / 5)


Verizon Fios

Overall Customer Rating

3.66 Stars (3.66 / 5)


Advantages

  • A DVR that can record fifteen shows at once
  • Low equipment fees
  • A huge channel selection
  • Various international programming

Advantages

  • An expansive channel selection
  • Good customer service ratings
  • A fast and reliable fiber-optic network
  • Lots of DVR storage

Disadvantages

  • Poor customer service ratings
  • Low DVR storage
  • Limited availability

View Plans


Disadvantages

  • High fees
  • A DVR that can record only twelve programs at once
  • Limited availability

View Plans

 


Installation & Setup

Optimum

3.29 Stars (3.29 / 5)

Like most cable providers, Optimum gives you a choice between professional installation and self-installation. They charge a fee for the pro job, but it isn’t published online—you’ll have to wait until you schedule your installation to find out the exact cost. For self-installation, the instructions are clear and easy to locate on Optimum’s support site. That said, Optimum ranks dead last in our customer satisfaction survey for this category, beginning a trend of lower-end scores that we’ll see throughout this comparison.


Verizon Fios

3.76 Stars (3.76 / 5)

Verizon also offers a choice of pro or self-installation. Heads up, though—it’s pricey. A professional install starts at $90, depending on the equipment you order, making it one of the most expensive installations of any cable provider. If you chose to go the DIY route after reading this, know that Verizon provides a robust support site and solid installation guides to help you through the process.


Channels

Optimum

3.30 Stars (3.30 / 5)

Optimum offers 620 channels, 165 of which are HD. It also stands out with a wide variety of international programming. Nonetheless, it scores very low in customer satisfaction for channel selection, proving that this isn’t purely a numbers game. But if variety is important to you, Optimum’s channel count is among the highest of any provider.


Verizon Fios

3.75 Stars (3.75 / 5)

Verizon Fios offers more than 425 channels in its top-tier Ultimate HD package, 145+ of which are HD. Optimum wins in raw channel count, but Verizon scores much higher in this category with customer satisfaction. In fact, it leads the pack by a wide margin. It also offers a strong On Demand library, if you prefer to watch on your own schedule.


Reliability

Optimum

3.62 Stars (3.62 / 5)

Despite ranking second to last on our survey, Optimum seems to provide reliable service—we couldn’t find any online complaints about its reliability. In general, cable networks are pretty robust when it comes to reliability, only choking up under especially heavy loads when lots of people are watching at the same time, like during the Super Bowl.


Verizon Fios

4.08 Stars (4.08 / 5)

Thanks to its fiber-optic network, Verizon Fios delivers consistent, reliable service. You shouldn’t have any trouble with your Verizon signal, even during peak times. Not surprisingly, it scores very high in this category.


Monthly Bill

Optimum

2.8 Stars (2.8 / 5)

Optimum’s lowest-tier packages start at the same price point as Verizon’s, which is around $65. The top-tier packages are significantly more expensive, though, climbing as high as $109.95 for Optimum Gold. For such a hefty price, you don’t get much extra—that Optimum Gold package gets you 445 channels, with 150 in HD, which is only a handful more than Verizon’s best package.


Verizon Fios

3.02 Stars (3.02 / 5)

Verizon Fios TV packages range from $64.99 to $89.99 per month. The lowest-tier packages offer 255+ SD and 80+ HD channels, while the top-tier Ultimate HD package offers the 425 SD and 145+ HD channels mentioned above. One thing to note with Verizon is that, like many TV providers, the advertised prices are locked in for only a certain period—one year, in this case. After that, depending on where you live, the price can increase significantly. Always read the fine print!


Tech Support & Customer Service

Optimum

3.30 Stars (3.30 / 5)

Optimum has a surprisingly well-designed site, and that extends to its support sites as well. The search function works as expected, and the site provides installation guides and videos front and center on the landing page. But unfortunately, that’s where the good news ends. Optimum ties for last place in this category in our survey, so that’s something to keep in mind if you decide to give Optimum a shot.

 


Verizon Fios

3.7 Stars (3.7 / 5)

Verizon is right up near the top in our satisfaction surveys, and the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) ranks it first among subscription television service providers (they don’t include Optimum in the data). Although its support site isn’t as nicely designed as Optimum’s, you shouldn’t have much trouble finding what you’re looking for.

 




Equipment

Equipment

Optimum Multi-Room DVR Plus

Equipment

Verizon FiosMulti-Room DVR

Simultaneous Recordings

15

Simultaneous Recordings

12

Storage

300 hours SD/75 hours HD

Storage

200 hours HD

Price

$10/month

Price

$32/month

Approximate Dimensions

Most boxes are about 13" x 10" x 2"

Approximate Dimensions

2.5" x 15" x 10"

# of TVs per DVR

Unlimited

# of TVs per DVR

Up to 10

Additional Features

Rewinds live TV, stores programming in the Cloud so it can be played back in multiple rooms

Additional Features

Pauses and rewinds live

Equipment

Optimum Multi-Room DVR Plus

Simultaneous Recordings

15

Storage

300 hours SD/75 hours HD

Price

$10/month

Approximate Dimensions

Most boxes are about 13" x 10" x 2"

# of TVs per DVR

Unlimited

Additional Features

Rewinds live TV, stores programming in the Cloud so it can be played back in multiple rooms

Equipment

Verizon FiosMulti-Room DVR

Simultaneous Recordings

12

Storage

200 hours HD

Price

$32/month

Approximate Dimensions

2.5" x 15" x 10"

# of TVs per DVR

Up to 10

Additional Features

Pauses and rewinds live

Data effective 2/15/2017


Internet Service

 

Optimum Online

Optimum offers internet service in addition to TV. Internet-only packages start at $24.95 and run up to $94.99 per month. In terms of speed, packages start at 10 Mbps download/1 Mbps upload. At the high end, you can get as fast as 300 Mbps download/35 Mbps upload, which is a great speed for a cable network. You can also bundle internet with TV and phone service with the Triple Play, which gets you 250 channels, 50 Mbps internet, and unlimited nationwide calling for $89.95.

View Bundled Plans

 

Verizon Fios Internet

Verizon also offers internet service, and it comes with definite advantages. Thanks to its use of fiber optics, Verizon offers extremely fast and reliable speeds, including the 750 Mbps Fios Instant Internet package in select areas. Another advantage for Verizon is that fiber networks allow for much higher upload speeds than traditional coaxial cables. These upload speeds are often equal to the download speed, which is particularly noteworthy considering that cable networks typically offer upload speeds around one tenth of the download speed. Fios Internet service is available separately or bundled, with TV and phone service starting at $79.99.

View Bundled Plans

 


More About the Providers

Optimum

Optimum is a small digital cable provider owned by Altice USA (formerly Cablevision). The company offers cable television, internet, and phone service to customers in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania.

Verizon Fios

Verizon Fios is a subsidiary of Verizon Communications that provides television, internet, and phone service to over five million people across nine states. Fios stands for “fiber-optic service;” its network operates over fiber-optic cables, which are meant to be faster and more reliable than traditional coaxial cables. It was among the first major providers to offer fiber optic services to residential customers in the United States.

 


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*Pricing and speeds are current as of writing. Pricing and speeds are subject to change. Not all offers available in all areas.