Saturday, November 29, 2014

Verizon Expands 4G LTE, Plans to Double Footprint by Year's End

Verizon this week plans to launch its super-fast 4G LTE network in seven new markets, and it aims to double its number of LTE markets to 400 by the end of the year, the company has announced.

Verizon will introduce its 4G LTE network on Thursday in Dothan, Ala., which will be its 200th LTE market, along with Enterprise, Ala.; Naples, Fla.; Greenville, N.C.; Altus and Durant, Okla.; and Longview/Marshall, Texas. The wireless carrier will also expand its LTE network in 17 markets on Thursday.

For a complete list, see below.

Moreover, Verizon plans to double its LTE market coverage by the end of the year, bringing its total number of LTE markets to more than 400, the company said. With the expansion, Verizon hopes its 4G LTE network will cover more than 260 million Americans by the end of 2012.

"Our plans to double our 4G LTE network coverage from the end of 2011 to the end of 2012 align with the aggressive and rapid deployment strategy we have taken with our 4G LTE network," David Small, chief technical officer of Verizon Wireless, said in a statement. "Our commitment to expanding and enhancing our 4G LTE network is enabling more customers across the country to enjoy the benefits of the most popular wireless devices.  We will continue investing in our 4G LTE network and working with key partners to ensure our customers have access to the best products and services available."

Meanwhile, 35 percent of smartphones sold during the fourth quarter of 2011 were equipped with 4G connectivity, up from 6 percent during the same quarter a year earlier, according to data from market research firm NPD Group. LTE handsets accounted for 7 percent of the smartphone market, up from zero the year earlier. The HTC Thunderbolt was the top-selling LTE device.

In December, Verizon celebrated the one-year anniversary of its 4G LTE network. PCMag gave the network high praise during our 2011 Fastest Mobile Networks test: "We found that Verizon's new 4G LTE network is much faster than other mobile Web options, with speeds that often exceed home Internet connections," PCMag analysts concluded.

In recent months, however, the network has experienced several instances of downtime, which Verizon attributed to "growing pains."

Rival AT&T launched its own 4G LTE network in late 2011, with expansions to about a dozen new markets earlier this week. T-Mobile said recently that it will upgrade to 4G LTE in 2013, while Sprint plans to launch 4G LTE in 10 cities by mid-2012.

New Verizon 4G LTE markets:

  • Dothan and Enterprise, Ala.
  • Naples, Fla.
  • Greenville, N.C.
  • Altus and Durant, Okla.
  • Longview/Marshall, Texas. 

Markets to expand:

  • Washington, D.C.
  • Elkhart, Ind.
  • Baltimore, Md.
  • Columbus, Miss.
  • Northern N.J.
  • Wilmington, N.C.
  • Duncan, Okla.
  • Allentown/Bethlehem, Harrisburg, Philadelphia and Scranton/Wilkes Barre, Pa.
  • Hilton Head, S.C.
  • Cleveland, Tenn.
  • Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
  • Kenosha, Madison and Milwaukee, Wis.

For the top stories in tech, follow us on Twitter at @PCMag.

News.Yahoo.com

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