FiOS1 is a new local content channel concept being launched in Verizon’s New York metro market. The ‘hyper-local’ channels will focus on Long Island and New Jersey, and offer local news, information, entertainment and sports programming. Verizon is following a long line of local content initiatives launched by both cable and IPTV operators in both large, small, and rural markets across the U.S.
“FiOS1 Long Island and FiOS1 New Jersey are all about the communities. These FiOS1 channels will redefine the delivery of truly local information about people, news and what’s going on in those areas,” Michael Ritter, Verizon’s Telecom’s chief marketing officer, said in a company statement.
Verizon has put together a multi-media team of partners employing mobile journalists–so-called MoJos–that will contribute content for the new channels. These include the North Shore-LIJ Health System and other producers on Long Island, The Star Ledger/NJ.com and NJN Public Television.
Local school sports coverage will be a mainstay for both FiOS channels and will include selected high school football, basketball and lacrosse games, as well as fencing, bowling and wrestling, and other sports competitions.
“With industry-leading partners and a cutting-edge and energized team of mobile journalists, or Mo-Jos, we plan to bring FiOS TV subscribers the type of programming that matters most — targeted, timely and tailored for local communities,” says Ritter.
Verizon will have its work cut out for them in New York. Cablevision has a significant foothold on local news with their News 12 channel, which covers virtually their entire footprint. Verizon VP of Content Terry Denson has gone on record as saying the FiOS1 concept will be repeated across multiple FiOS markets, potentially injecting significant momentum into the local content movement.