Will Sonic drop me when fiber arrives?

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, IP Broadband, and Gigabit Fiber!
7 posts Page 1 of 1
by dkenglish7 » Tue Feb 23, 2021 11:34 am
The Sonic 'upgrade my internet service' page tells me that fiber will soon arrive in my neighborhood in the Oakland hills. That is exciting and a little terrifying, because:

1. From what I have read here, once fiber arrives in a neighborhood, all the copper customers are required to transition to fiber. (Any exceptions?)

2. Sonic only installs fiber from aerial poles, not underground. (My utilities all run underground under my shared driveway, about 250ft from a pole on the opposite side of the street.) Any way - including 3rd party installers - to get Sonic fiber pulled from the street to my house?

Does this mean Sonic will drop me once the fiber arrives in my neighborhood? Should I start investigating Comcast and AT&T?

Thanks for any help. Underground utilities are great for preventing fires and accidental outages, and make the neighborhood prettier. I never anticipated that a 30-year-old decision would be so problematic now.
by syntaxsid1 » Tue Feb 23, 2021 4:11 pm
Hello,

We are building out our fiber network to get a better service quality to everyone we can. Since the new service is the fastest in the country for the same exact price you are paying now, we do eventually require everyone to upgrade to that. Fiber doesn't suffer from the same issues as an electric current traveling over copper wire so it's more stable. It's easier to install and maintain so switching over to Fiber is typically a "no brainer" for most of our customers. There are no exceptions because the copper wire belongs to AT&T and with our Fiber infrastructure, we don't have to pay AT&T a rent check and we don't have to worry about them maintaining the copper lines as well. Eventually AT&T will drop support on the old copper lines since they require a lot of maintenance for upkeep. This transition will keep you connected for many years to come!

It is true we are only focused (and in some areas only allowed to) on aerial deployment. In some areas the counties won't allow us to dig or microtrench to deliver service to areas with underground utilities. This may be something we can do later, but not for this initial deployment. We won't drop you once Fiber is in the area. This would completely be your choice for a while but eventually the copper lines will be phased out due to all the trouble they can be. Upgrading when it comes will "future proof" yourself going forward. I hope this information helps. Please feel free to call our support line for any further details or questions you may have with the service. Have a great day.


Kind Regards,

Jeff M.
Jeff M. with Community Escalations @ Sonic
by dane » Tue Feb 23, 2021 4:37 pm
To provide an outline of the two potential cases: If we can serve you with fiber, we will migrate you to that network. If we cannot serve you with fiber, the copper service would continue - we don't drop customers that we cannot reach with fiber if we can still serve them with copper.
Dane Jasper
Sonic
by schaecsn » Mon Mar 08, 2021 1:44 pm
syntaxsid1 wrote:
switching over to Fiber is typically a "no brainer" for most of our customers.


The big bummer is "you are required to use an AT&T supplied modem" (https://www.sonic.com/residential).
by lasevich » Mon Mar 08, 2021 9:04 pm
schaecsn wrote:
syntaxsid1 wrote:
switching over to Fiber is typically a "no brainer" for most of our customers.


The big bummer is "you are required to use an AT&T supplied modem" (https://www.sonic.com/residential).


You need an AT&T Modem for Sonic Fiber? That doesn't sound right. I suspect you are thinking of the AT&T resold Fiber, which Sonic also offers for locations they do not have Sonic Fiber ... I can't imagine a scenario where Sonic would want a 3rd party hardware on 100% Sonic infrastructure ... (and no, they do not force people to migrate to AT&T Fiber - been in my neighborhood for years, I'd rather stick to Sonic DSL and I was never forced to switch )
by patiris » Tue Mar 09, 2021 10:47 am
Not a "no brainer" - internet aside, I'm quite happy to have Fusion POTS and a corded phone, for one thing it still works during a power outage (especially for 911). I'm at the dodgy end of the lake in Oakland, and wouldn't expect fiber that soon, but if/when it arrives, is that the end of POTS?

It's been obvious for years that AT&T wants to dump their copper altogether. Rumor has it (from one of their techs) that Sonic might actually take it off their hands. Possible?
by dane » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:58 pm
patiris wrote:
Not a "no brainer" - internet aside, I'm quite happy to have Fusion POTS and a corded phone, for one thing it still works during a power outage (especially for 911). I'm at the dodgy end of the lake in Oakland, and wouldn't expect fiber that soon, but if/when it arrives, is that the end of POTS?


Yes, if/when fiber arrives you can expect copper POTS to be retired shortly thereafter. Power backup is an important point though. We offer small battery backup units that provide either eight or 24 hours of power backup for the on-premise equipment. Residents can also provide site power themselves, for any duration, usinga larger UPS, or integrated solar/batteries (SolarWall etc), or a portable or installed generator.

Also probably worth mentioning that fiber-optic networks are largely passive, so they are generally not dependent upon thousands of cabinets in neighborhoods like a Cable system or Fiber-to-the-node (UVerse) product. With Cable for example, power might be on at your home but your Cable might be out because the battery in the nearby electronics cabinet died after a couple of days. That isn't the same with fiber.

It's been obvious for years that AT&T wants to dump their copper altogether. Rumor has it (from one of their techs) that Sonic might actually take it off their hands. Possible?


No, we would not. Doing so would be buying a buggy whip today. The copper is a very old infrastructure and will clearly be replaced by fiber and wireless over time. We have got to put our efforts and dollars into the future, not the past.
Dane Jasper
Sonic
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