Verizon Keeps 5G Expansion Plans Close to the Vest

Dan Meyer | January 30, 2019

Verizon Keeps 5G Expansion Plans Close to the Vest
Verizon is aggressively rolling out updates to the technology behind its 5G network deployment that will align that network with established standards. But, the carrier remains tight-lipped on just when it will launch that standards-based service. Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg told financial analysts during the company’s fourth-quarter 2018 conference call that the carrier was deploying 5G “as fast as we can.” He did not provide details on those deployment plans, but did note that the carrier has been aggressive in deploying supporting technologies like software-controlled fiber. As for updates to its 5G Home service, Vestberg explained that the carrier was waiting for continued maturation of the standards-based 5G New Radio (NR) technology to update the proprietary technology currently used for the service. “As the industry matures, the equipment is maturing for NR so we can bring that in,” Vestberg said, according to a Seeking Alpha transcript. “And we actually have quite a lot of deployment already of those types [of] base stations. So, we will come back to that when we commercially launch that…It’s nothing we want to disclose for competitive reasons. So, I wouldn’t talk about it right now.” Verizon launched its 5G Home service in October. The service uses a Verizon-based proprietary 5G technologyand is available in just a handful of markets. The carrier has said it would update those deployments to the standards-based 5G technology once it becomes available. “We were very clear when we launched 5G Home that it was on the TF [Technology Forum] standard and that when NR hardware was ready we’d update customers at no charge,” Verizon spokesman Kevin King told SDxCentral earlier this month.

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