Like other carriers, Verizon Wireless is looking to add Wi-Fi to its mix of services to enable high-speed data. The twist? It's rolling out its own high-speed flavor of CDMA as well. Will price/performance or convenience triumph?
Verizon Wireless confirmed plans to roll out a 2.4 Mbit/s wireless network in two markets in the third quarter, combining mobility with broadband speeds.
After testing its 1xEV-DO technology in Washington D.C. with Lucent Technologies and in San Diego with Nortel Networks, Verizon announced that it would roll the technology out to both markets in the third quarter.
Although the 1XEV-DO service competes with wired broadband solutions such as DSL and cable modems, a Verizon spokesman said the company would be marketing the new service through business-to-business channels, as a way for sales representatives and other business people to access the office network while on the road.
"I would say that to a degree, the service offers DSL-type speeds, but that for the most part DSL is a consumer-oriented product," a Verizon spokesman said.
While some consumers will walk into a store and purchase a Verizon AirCard--which uses a different data transmission standard, known as CDMA 1xRRT--the company generally markets its products to business customers, the spokesman said.
Pricing plans have not been set. The 1XEV-DO network will not only compete with the 3G services by other wireless carriers, but also consumer DSL and cable modem plans, the spokesman acknowledged.
If the rollouts are successful, the network will be expanded to other metropolitan areas, over time. "Its definitely something were looking at," the spokesman said.
The 1XEV-DO network, which is based upon the CDMA2000 standard, was first implemented in South Korea earlier this year by KTF, a subsidiary of Korea Telecom and South Koreas second largest wireless network operator. Phones supporting the new standard are available in Korea, including the SCH-V300 CDMA2000 1xEV-DO phone from Koreas Samsung.
Verizon Wireless plans to sell a wide array of 1xEV-DO devices including PCMCIA cards, modem solutions for the office and a wide range of the latest mobile devices, the company said. Verizon will also offer 802.11b services later this year, providing connections between the Verizon Wireless wide area network and hundreds of hot spots across the country.