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Verizon Launching 4G Service On Sunday

December 2, 2010

Verizon Wireless has announced plans to roll out 4G service in 38 major US cities starting Sunday, various media outlets reported on Wednesday.

The company’s fourth generation cellular service, dubbed the 4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) network, will launch in Boston, Washington D.C., Chicago, Miami, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, and Seattle, among other locations, according to AP Technology Writer Peter Svensson. Furthermore, the AFP reported that the service will also become available at 60 airports throughout the country this weekend.

The cost of the service will be $50 per month for 5 gigabytes (GB) of usage–$10 less than the company currently charges for 3G service–or $80 for 10 GB worth of service.

“The move to 4G LTE, the latest wireless network standard, enables faster and smoother wireless Internet access,” Reuters reported on Wednesday. “Five GB is usually enough for someone who browses the Web, uses Facebook and sends and receives e-mails. But video takes up more space, with movies on Netflix taking up around 1 GB per hour on average.”

Verizon Wireless, which is a joint venture of New York-based Verizon Communications Inc. and London-based Vodafone Group PLC, has lagged behind Sprint Nextel, whose Clearwire Corp subsidy already currently offers 4G service. However, their chief rivals, AT&T, have yet to upgrade to the current generation, despite currently enjoying a deal with apple to be the exclusive carried for the iPhone.

“This next-generation network will provide speeds significantly faster than existing wireless networks,” Verizon spokeswoman Debra Lewis told AFP. “Downloading a video that takes 10 minutes now will take one minute on a 4G network.”

“Our 4G LTE launch gives customers access to the fastest and most advanced mobile network in America and immediately reaches more than one-third of all Americans right where they live,” added the company’s chief executive, Dan Mead. “That’s just the start. We will quickly expand 4G LTE, and by 2013 will reach the existing Verizon Wireless 3G coverage area.”

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