Network operator Verizon Wireless announced the expansion of its 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) data network to 34 new markets and expands in 38 other markets this week, bringing the company's total coverage area up to 75 percent of the population in the United States.
The new markets that launched Aug. 16 include cities stretching from California to Massachusetts, while cities like Santa Barbara, Calif., saw their 4G coverage expanded. Network coverage expanded in other major cities such as New York, Salt Lake City, Boston, Cincinnati and Chicago.
Following this week's market launches and expansions, the network will be available to customers in 371 markets across the country. The company's 4G LTE network offers download speeds 10 times faster than before, according to a Verizon press release, and consumers have a range of tablets, mobile hotspots and smartphones that are 4G LTE-compatible, including the popular Samsung Galaxy S III and HTC's Droid Incredible 4G LTE, both running Google's Android operating system.
For customers new to 4G LTE or looking to purchase a 4G LTE device, Verizon offers workshops online and in select stores about the network, as well as information on the basic and advanced features of connected devices. Verizon is also reaching out to customers in areas where Internet options are limited or are not currently available through HomeFusion Broadband, a platform that leverages the 4G LTE network to deliver high-speed, in-home Internet access for residential broadband.
LTE technology provides lower latency-the processing time it takes to move data through a network-which helps improve services like mobile gaming, two-way video calling and telemedicine. LTE also uses spectrum more efficiently than other technologies, which creates more space to carry data traffic and services and to deliver a faster network experience.
"Our 4G LTE network is currently in more markets than all other U.S. wireless providers combined, and our team is continuing to expand the network so that more customers across the nation can take advantage of 4G LTE speed and capabilities," Nicola Palmer, chief technical officer of Verizon Wireless, said in a company statement. "We are ahead of schedule with our 4G LTE market rollout and will provide 4G LTE network coverage to more than 400 markets in the near future."
Rival carrier AT&T, which trails Verizon in 4G coverage, also announced this week that it had deployed 4G coverage to Waco, Texas, and communities across northwest Arkansas. The company's coverage extends to 53 markets and more than 30,000 hotspots across the U.S. Over the past five years, AT&T has invested more than $115 billion into operations and into acquiring spectrum and other assets for its networks.