Analog vs Digital Phone - still confused
FacelessUser
Enthusiast - Level 3

I just switched to FIOS via the Triple Play, Phone, TV, and Internet.  Given the option, I asked to remain with the analog phone service figuring a) One less thing to break and b) I didn't have to deal with the battery backup thing.  During installation of the fiber my phone did go dead until it it was reconnected.  So, I have to assume that Verizon switched me from copper to fiber.

My first question is, so what is the difference if my phone service is coming over the fiber to the ONT then converted to analog (analog phone service) or if it comes over the fiber via VOIP to the same ONT - only with a battery backup?  It seems like the same deal, only "digital" requires the ONT to be battery backed up to provide several hours of phone service.

I have to assume that analog phone service will continue during a power failure?

On my ONT, I have only one green light.  The battery light is not lit in any color, red or green.  This makes sense since the battery is only used for digital phone service and I assume I do not have a battery installed?

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jumpin68ny
Master - Level 2

Analog phone service is commonly referred to as POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service).  Before FIOS a set of copper wires would run to each home.  At the Central Office the copper wiring gets cross connected into a phone switch.  The phone switch connects the calls.

With the advent of FIOS the analog service is the same, a connection is made into the phone switch at the central office but instead of the copper cable running from the Central Office to the home, that is replaced with fiber optics.

The digital phone service uses SIP (VOIP) and instead of going into the phone switch goes into a different piece of equipment than the phone switch used for the analog service.

I hope this helps and explains why digital phone service is not available in your neighborhood.

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prisaz
Legend

@FacelessUser wrote:

I just switched to FIOS via the Triple Play, Phone, TV, and Internet.  Given the option, I asked to remain with the analog phone service figuring a) One less thing to break and b) I didn't have to deal with the battery backup thing.  During installation of the fiber my phone did go dead until it it was reconnected.  So, I have to assume that Verizon switched me from copper to fiber.

My first question is, so what is the difference if my phone service is coming over the fiber to the ONT then converted to analog (analog phone service) or if it comes over the fiber via VOIP to the same ONT - only with a battery backup?  It seems like the same deal, only "digital" requires the ONT to be battery backed up to provide several hours of phone service.

I have to assume that analog phone service will continue during a power failure?

On my ONT, I have only one green light.  The battery light is not lit in any color, red or green.  This makes sense since the battery is only used for digital phone service and I assume I do not have a battery installed?


The Analog Phone with FIOS is through the ONT and also battery backed up. Analog means it is not VOIP and still regulated as a public service(You pay taxes and such). The digital voice uses a session intiated protocol  (SIP) which is VOIP and it is not regulated as a public service(Save on taxes and fees) also has other features that I like and some I do not like. I decided to pay the extra taxes and fees to keep analog.

My battery backup has a green system status light that is on. If you have questions regarding your installation and battery backup operation, I would call tech support and have them check the system. They can run diagnostics and look at your ONT status. One way to check your battery is to unplug your power plug and see if your phone still operates. If it does not the install was not properly performed.

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jumpin68ny
Master - Level 2

From my understanding the Digital (VOIP) solution has many more features vs. the non-digital phone service.  Also, the digital service requires 10 digit dialing for local numbers (area code + number) 

FacelessUser
Enthusiast - Level 3

Thanks - I am a little less confused.  I do have a battery backup, although I have an "analog" phone.  I see no difference in the physical connection between the "analog" phone and the "digital" phone.

As for the battery indicator, there is a green light on for the system.  However, for the battery indicator, green means "bad."  If it's on constant then the system is running on battery power e.g.. bad.  If it's blinking green, it means it's charging e.g. not as bad as solid green but cause for concern.  Red means "very bad."  The only "good" indicator is when it's off entirely.

I understand "digital" phone to mean "VOIP" which is probably going through the router in a way similar to the STB using the router for VOD and the Guide.

So, apart from features, taxes, and the status of a public utility, the only question I have left is how is the "analog" phone operating?  I mean, it's obviously digital since it's going through the same ONT as the "digital" phone connection.  Isn't it?  Does it use a different protocol?

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jumpin68ny
Master - Level 2

The phone service does NOT go through the router.  It is a direct connection into the ONT.

The digital service uses SIP (session initiation protocol).  

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FacelessUser
Enthusiast - Level 3

@jumpin68ny wrote:

The phone service does NOT go through the router.  It is a direct connection into the ONT.

The digital service uses SIP (session initiation protocol).  


Ok.  How does the fios "analog" phone line work?

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jumpin68ny
Master - Level 2

Analog phone service is commonly referred to as POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service).  Before FIOS a set of copper wires would run to each home.  At the Central Office the copper wiring gets cross connected into a phone switch.  The phone switch connects the calls.

With the advent of FIOS the analog service is the same, a connection is made into the phone switch at the central office but instead of the copper cable running from the Central Office to the home, that is replaced with fiber optics.

The digital phone service uses SIP (VOIP) and instead of going into the phone switch goes into a different piece of equipment than the phone switch used for the analog service.

I hope this helps and explains why digital phone service is not available in your neighborhood.

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FacelessUser
Enthusiast - Level 3

It sounds to me as if Verizon has chosen poor terms, Analog and Digital to describe POTS and VOIP.  They are both digital connections going through the ONT which requires a battery to operate in the event of a power failure.  Digital Voice aka VOIP has fancy internet features but is more prone to break in the event of a power failure.  All phone numbers require an area code since there are no "local" numbers any longer (so I have been told).  But, there is a cool call manager web page where where you can manage your phone calls.

Analog aka POTS is the traditional service.  You're still loosing your copper connection to the CO but gaining a cleaner digital connection over fiber.  You still have to maintain the battery.  It's more expensive since it's regulated as a public utility e.g. taxes and fees.  History has shown POTS to be more reliable than VOIP, although that should change once VOIP becomes mature.

The big gotcha between POTS vs VOIP are fax machines.  If you are using a fax machine or fax modem you are far better off with Analog aka POTS service.  Breaking up the signal into packets causes jitter which simply wrecks phase modulation of anything faster than 9600 baud.  And, ECM will stop working - Error Correction Mode which causes a re-transmission of packets in the event of data loss.

jumpin68ny
Master - Level 2

The terminology VZ is using is confusing.  I work in the telecommunication field and trying to understand what VZ is doing was confusing at first.  Regardless of which service one chooses both go through the ONT and NOT the router.

Most folks have cordless phones so if you lose power your phone is out of service anyway.  I currently use Vonage for Telephone and if the power goes out or the Internet connection goes down I have a designated number all calls will go to which is my cell.  This is a real nice feature.  

Regardless of which phone service you have, Digital or VOIP they have the same reliability with regard to power since they require the ONT to be operating and if the battery back up fails during a power outage all services will be down.

I have been using Vonage for about 4 years now and can count on one hand the number of times the service did not work.  When I had VZ phone service (before FIOS) the northeast had a power outage that occurred at 3pm.  My wife was on a wired phone and at 4:30pm the phone went dead.  The CO had poor backup coverage so where is the reliability?????

I have a second phone line from Vonage which is a fax line.  I use the fax machine on a regular basis without issue.  Additionally prior to having FIOS TV I had DirecTV and my TIVO unit would make a daily call to DirecTV for guide updates and software updates.  That too worked flawlessly.   I don't know the speeds of the Fax or TIVO service but it all works good with Vonage.

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6kydmann
Newbie

What about home security monitoring and quick 911 calling via the security keypad - does the digital VOIP support this?

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JerryTech1
Enthusiast - Level 2

Not all the time - my system will dial the central station but the pager has stoped working since FiOS.

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LawrenceC
Moderator Emeritus

As this thread is now over two years old, it will be locked in order to keep discussions current. If you have the same or a similar question/issue we invite you to start a new thread on the topic.

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tns
Master - Level 2

To clarify, NO FIOS phone service is analog.  Whether you use FIOS Digital Voice or not it is actually essentially the same and digital to the office you are connected to.  At that point those who do not have FIOS Digital Voice have their phone service merged with the older analog users.  The Non-FIOS (POTS) analog users are also converted to Digital at that point and all those go over the conventional Verizon Phone service.   FIOS Digital Voice service however continues to use IP services until the point that the call is delivered to a network that doesn't support it.  Perhaps staying as IP all the way, or being converted to POTS (analog/digital) service.

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mikey20131
Newbie

Just so that you and everyone here knows the difference between Analog phone signal service versus digital signal phone service. First the most important thing to remember which is what I go by for myself as I can only speak for myself on behalf of my thoughts and opinions is that with analog home phone service (landline tradtional home phone service used with copper wiriring), if you have a power outage in your home location area, you are still able to have full use of your landline home phone as long as the landline analog home phone, whether it be touch tone or rotary is not dependent upon power usage-meaning it does not require the phone to have to be plugged into an electrical outlet in order for it to have power function, this means that the phone's power source is obtained by the phone wall jack where you plug one end of the phone cord into your phone's jack and the other end into the phone's wall jack, make sense?  that's exactly how the use of all home phone service in the USA and around the world has been operating way before modern phone technology kicked in, before the use of cell phones, Digital phones from cable companies, VOIPS and FIOL, remember?  I.,e I lived as child throughout the 1960's and at that time until the late 90's, everyone or almost every home in the USA that I know have could only have their landline home phone equipment connected to a wall phone jack, there was simply no other such way to have another phone connection during those times just like the way we do now as everything has changed due to high advances in modern technology. I remember for the very first time after the year 2000, when I for the very first time had my home phone equipment which was a 2 phone line use hooked up to my optimum online cable internet modem which had a phone jack right on it. That's the only way my home phone signal would operate while it being on the phone jack located on my computer's internet high speed cable modem. This means that if I decided to plug one end of my phone cord on to my phone's jack and the other end of my phone cord into the wall phone jack, there would be no signal at all. Why, because I would no longer have an anaglog home phone service, instead it was now considered as a digital home phone service(VOIP) which operated via a cable line signal or same as to say a digital signal. Additionally, this type of phone service is setup via inside wiring, where as analog home phone service without the use of FIOS or any other type of digital voice connection is done via outside wiring.

An analog home phone eqipment using an analog home phone service signal connection is a continuous signal that is uninterrupted, whereas digital  or VOIP signals are not continuous signals, which is why if there happens to be a power outage your internet service will shut down along with your phone service if it is not backed up with a battery inside the modem until full power restores. Whereas, with a landline analog signal service your home phone will still be operable despite a power outage even if it relies on power source for the phone to be connected to an electircal outlet. For instance, you will still be able to use the phone to make outbound calls, but will not have use of call waiting, caller ID nor any of the other calling features until full power is restored unless you have one of those home landline phones that comes equipped with being able to install a battery back in case of power outage. Whereas, to the landline phones that get their full power source just by them being hooked up to their phone wall jacks, the phone will be fully functional regardless of the power outages or network outages in your area. With FiOS digital Voice phone service your home landline phone eqipment is hooked up to that FIOS modem-ONT which contains a phone jack on it instead of it being plugged into wall phone jack. So, if there's a power outage and the batter back up is installed on the FIOS ONT device properly, you should have phone signal operable for up to 8 hours maximum, which is a very good thing because usually when there's a power outage depending on the severity of course, the outage on an average only lasts for a few hours or so at the most especially in large neighborhoods and cities. However, at the enf of the 8 hours, even though the phone signal could go out from the modem, there is a section on the device that is used for recharging the battery-this will given you at least an additional 1 more extra hour of phone service before the battery dies out completely. This section with the rechargable emergency battery system is to only be used in an emergency.

Lastly, the main thing I would be concerned about just as well as I'm sure all those of you  would be concerned about especially if your are recent analog home phone users along with having HSI-DSL service, is the fact that the worse case scenario would be if there were to be a FIOS network outage. There's a significant difference between a power outage and a network outage. If there were to be a FIOS network outage in your area, this would unfortunately mean that all your home services would be out of service-completely interrupted-that goes for all services that includes, TV, Internet & Phone usage. Nothing would work until the network outage by the Verizon FIOS network would be restored, plain and simple. So, therefore, if you were to ask me which case scenario would be the worst or one to be concerned about, I would tell you the "network outage" situation would be worse versus the power outage. Your only alternative to voice communication in such a rare case or infrequent scenario would be simply to have a cell phone and use of your cell phone as your one and only alternative.  As to where if you simply just have HSI-DSL and traditional home phone service with Verizon, during a network outage where your internet connection would be interrupted, your landline home phone analog service signal would still be operable for the most part, unless there was a major destruction that occurred at the central office location which is not very common at all, althoiugh possible like anything that's possible in life, not very likely. As some of you may or may not know for sure, with HSI (DSL)  and home phone analog signal service, your internet connection and high speed and optimal performance is determined upon the quality of  your home phone eqipment operation. This is because as for the most part in many areas, your HSI will not operate at all without the use of your home phone service working. However, if for any reason your HSI goes down for whatever technical reason, your analog home phone service equipment and operation will still function just like if there were to be just a traditional home phone service inside your home without the use of internet.  This is what I love about traditional home phone service. Also, home phone analog signal service is popularly used and needed for home security alarm systems to work properly. Home Security can be used with FIOS voice as well, but in a different way with different confirguations that I do not know of, but it can be done, but analog phone service would be your best bet with home security systems. I agree totally that Verizon should not be forcing or pressuring current traditional home phone users with HSI to updgrade to FIOS at all. This should be the customer's full decision made. Hey, you're the one that's paying for service out of your hard earned money. Thus, why should you be paying for something that you are uncomfortable with?  Aside from this, the only main primary reason why I think Verizon has been doing their very best to eliminate copper wiring and taking away traditional analog home phone service away from their customers in certain communities that are able to use FIOS is mainly due to the fact that the repairs for fiber optic are much more significantly more feasible, less time consuming  and of course easier to fix compared to that of copper wiring. To them, just like most typical types of businesses that exist today, it's all about saving time and money. Nevertheless, even though this may be very true, even though FIOS is 10 times more advanced and has lots more features and advanctages to traditional home phone anaglog signal services and HSI, it should still be completely a matter of choice for all of its customers. Nobody should be pressured into upgrading and/or buying a service that they would be very unhappy with. Bottom line, it's your money, so it's your choice.

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