HAMPTON, Va., March 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Employees at Verizon's newest, state-of-the-art call center began handling calls this morning in support of consumers who have the most advanced broadband services in the country. Verizon today is celebrating the grand opening of its Fiber Solutions Center, located on the second floor of 200 New Market Fair Mall. The company expects to have approximately 180 employees staffing the center by the end of March. Employees in the center support consumers and business customers who purchase new broadband products -- known as FiOS(SM) (FYE'-ose) services -- over Verizon's new fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network, which the company is building in parts of 13 states, including Virginia. The new technology uses fiber-optic connections -- instead of copper wire -- directly into homes or businesses to enable a broad array of voice, data and video services. Verizon is offering three tiers of FiOS Internet service with downstream (download) speeds of up to 5, 15 and 30 Mbps (megabits per second).* The company will notify customers when FiOS products are available in their area. "The Hampton Fiber Solutions Center and its employees will play a key role as Verizon provides our new FiOS customers with an unprecedented broadband experience," said Scott Nunes, Verizon director of the Hampton Fiber Solutions Center. "Our new employees are trained in all aspects of how this technology works, and they will help our customers get the most out of the very best broadband services available today." Clyde R. Hoey II, president of the Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, said, "The Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce congratulates Verizon for its decision to locate its new installation in Hampton. The 180 upscale new jobs will strengthen the Virginia Peninsula's economy today and into the future, and we look forward to continued growth at the center. We wish Verizon success with this new operation." Specially trained fiber-customer-support analysts and fiber-network technicians in the center will handle calls from customers who buy FiOS services -- and from Verizon technicians who install the new products -- answering technical questions and remotely diagnosing and correcting problems. Verizon has opened a similar customer service center in the Dallas-Forth Worth area, and the company also will open centers in Syracuse, N.Y.; Providence, R.I.; and Thousand Oaks, Calif. * NOTE: Actual (throughput) speeds will vary. With more than $71 billion in annual revenues, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon has a diverse work force of more than 210,000 in four business units: Domestic Telecom serves customers based in 29 states with wireline telecommunications services, including broadband, nationwide long-distance and other services. Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 43.8 million voice and data customers across the United States. Information Services operates directory publishing businesses and provides electronic commerce services. International includes wireline and wireless operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit http://www.verizon.com. VERIZON'S ONLINE NEWS CENTER: Verizon news releases, executive speeches and biographies, media contacts, high quality video and images, and other information are available at Verizon's News Center on the World Wide Web at http://www.verizon.com/news. To receive news releases by e-mail, visit the News Center and register for customized automatic delivery of Verizon news releases.