Verizon launches 5G service in Minneapolis, Chicago

05 April, 2019, 06:57 | Author: Rickey Flowers
  • Verizon just turned on its 5G network in the US a week ahead of schedule

The service Verizon is offering - 5G, the fifth generation of wireless data networks - could provide consumers Internet speeds that are up to 100 times faster than 4G networks, according to an industry trade association.

Outside of those areas, meanwhile, your 5G device will fall back onto 4G LTE.

With the U.S., South Korea, and China in a race to get their 5G networks up and running, it seems that Verizon wanted to beat SK Telecom to the punch. Why?

5G is a new and rapidly evolving technology and Verizon expects regular improvement in 5G Ultra Wideband speed, latency and overall network performance as Verizon engineers, working with a number of technology partners, continue to upgrade the network.

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In Chicago, 5G coverage is concentrated in areas of the West Loop and the South Loop, around landmarks like Union Station, Willis Tower, The Art Institute of Chicago, Millennium Park and The Chicago Theatre.

Not all parts of Chicago and Minneapolis are now covered. Verizon says 5G Ultra Wideband service is also available in its store on the Magnificent Mile as well as throughout the Gold Coast, Old Town and North River. You need more cell sites to cover the same area compared with LTE, including indoor networks like the one at US Bank Stadium. The Verizon reps used a Moto Z3 with an attached 5G Moto Mod that can both be purchased today for access to this new 5G network. As we reported last month, the initial plan was to launch 5G in those two markets on April 11th, but the service is live for subscribers right now.

So, while the 5G network is clearly the faster of the two, it's not by an order of magnitude.

We're going to continue to test the advent of 5G in Chicago this week, so stay tuned for updates on how the service functions for us and the top speeds we hit. No other phone sold by the carrier will be able to reach the speeds Verizon promises, leaving very few potential 5G users. Once you have that sorted, you'll need to sign up for the UWB plan which is an extra $10 per month over the standard unlimited plan rates. AT&T launched its 5G service in select areas late previous year, but it only made a single 5G hotspot available to select testers and hasn't said a peep since.

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