I was using a Westell 2200 modem for my DSL service when I first signed up with Verizon in May of 2005. My download speed test showed that I had about 2800Kbps. I kept testing this until September of 2007. I did not check the download speed again until August of 2008 when I found it to be about 1100Kbps or less. I recently called the Verizon tech support and they shipped me a Westell 6100F modem. My download speed test at www.verizon.net/speedtest shows my speed at about 1000Kbps or less. I called tech support again and they checked my line and said that my download speed is 3600Kbps and that the download speed from their website is not accurate. Therefore I have no way to verify that I am receiving the 3000Kbps download speed that I am paying for. I have used several other websites to check my download speed and they all indicate about the same 1100Kbps or less.
You can see what speed your modem/router has negotiated on the line by looking at the router status information.
http://192.168.1.1 connects you to the router. That should give you the negotiated uplink and downlink speed and losses on the copper pair, and that is your connection speed.
That speed is determined by the maximum that Verizon provisions you for, and the quality/condition of the copper pair between you and the central office.
Your actual download speed via speed test, or from any given web site is subject to all sorts of external constraints such as number of users on the web site, speed of your computer, and connectivity between that web site and the internet. IE if the web site is connected to the web via a T1 for example, it only has about 1.5mbps available, so even if you are the only user, you will never get more than 1.5 million bits per second from that site even if your line is 3 million bits per second..
If the maximum negotiated rate on the line is well below what you are paying for, either Verizon hasn't properly provisioned the line, and it needs to be reprogrammed, or the copper pair just cannot support the full rate that has been provisioned.
I"m afraid they are right to a degree. I've not seen an accurate test with that site...especially as you get into the higher speeds..
Report back with your results...
On a side note: Things that effect your speed in the house...Satellite recievers, alarm systems, cordless phones, poor wiring. If you get courageous, you can run a wire directly outside and disconnect everything else except the modem and try your test again.
I have a Westell 7500 modem and am on the starter plan which allows me to "Download up to 1 Mbps / Upload up to 384 Kbps".
I usually run the www.speedtest.net scan when I feel my connection is slow and most often I have only gotten about 500Kbps download speed.