Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg used Apple’s stage to let the world know that his company has switched on nationwide 5G.
Vestberg joined Apple CEO Tim Cook during the announcement of the first 5G iPhones to mark this historic moment for both companies.
Apple and Verizon claim to have worked closely together to ensure iPhone users get the best experience on the network.
“We were first in the world to 5G and we are continuing to drive 5G forward,” said Vestberg. “Our job, our passion, is to push the boundaries of what’s possible, to bring the ecosystem together and to create experiences consumers and enterprises never even knew they needed or wanted.”
“From the start, our focus has been on building a transformational 5G network that will drastically reshape society. Today’s announcement brings us one step closer to that future.”
Verizon has launched its ultra-wideband 5G network in 55 cities, 43 stadiums, and 7 airports. The “nationwide” network is low-band and Vestberg says covers more than 200 million people.
Until now, Verizon’s focus on mmWave 5G – which offers the fastest speeds but poorer range – has allowed its competitors to boast of broader 5G availability.
Verizon’s rollout of mmWave has been slow due to the requirements of many small cells needing to be installed—yet the difficulty of obtaining the required approvals to do so.
The new nationwide 5G network shares Verizon’s existing spectrum and infrastructure using “dynamic spectrum sharing” (DSS) technology. DSS is also being used by AT&T for parts of its own rollout.
DSS will quickly help Verizon close the gap in coverage against T-Mobile and AT&T. However, like its competitors, 5G using DSS will be an improvement over 4G but it won’t offer the blistering speeds of mmWave 5G.
Verizon itself says that mmWave will be the best experience for 5G. The operator will be expanding its mmWave coverage in areas such as sports stadiums, landmarks, and parks.
The company also says it plans to double mmWave coverage in cities including New York and San Francisco, along with rolling it out in further cities.
By the end of 2020, Verizon plans to launch 5G Ultra Wideband in more than 60 cities.
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