Today, Verizon (NYSE: VZ ) launched a new Quantum FiOS Internet tier that clocks in at 500 megabits per second for download speeds and 100 Mbps for uploads -- the fastest Verizon has ever offered. The company said in a press release that users can download a two-hour 5GB HD movie in about 1.4 minutes.
Bob Mudge, Verizon's president of the consumer and mass business group, said in a statement that the company's users "want to stream movies on myriad devices, share tons of pictures and home videos, and send big work files so they don't skip a beat when they're working from home or growing their business. Our all-fiber-optic network lets them do it all at the same time."
The 500 Mbps speed is significantly higher than the average Internet speed most American households have, which is about 15.6 Mbps, according to the FCC.
Verizon said the new speed tier is available in all parts of its FiOS market, although it won't be available to all customers in those areas until 2014. The 500 Mbps speed tier starts at $309.99 per month when bundled with other services and a two-year contract. Small businesses can order the service as a standalone feature for $369.99 per month with a two-year contract.