Wireless carrier Verizon recently ignited its new “5G Ultra Wideband” network in Phoenix in an effort to launch its millimeter wave-based 5G service in 30 cities by the end of 2019. The carrier’s 5G Ultra Wideband network is also currently available in Washington D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Indianapolis, Chicago, Denver, Minneapolis, Providence and St. Paul.
Both businesses and consumers in and around the greater Phoenix area will experience 5G speed and bandwidth as well as movies, presentations and large data files quickly. Phoenix is the 10th U.S city to get Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband mobility service since April. In Phoenix, the operator said 5G connections would be available at the Phoenix Convention Center, Talking Stick Resort Arena, The Orpheum Theatre, CityScape, Chase Field and the Arizona State University campus in nearby Tempe. Clearly Verizon is nowhere near ubiquitous coverage in any city with millimeter wave technology.
Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg has noted dynamic spectrum sharing as a key piece of achieving nationwide coverage. DSS is a software functionality that allows 5G NR and LTE to operate at the same time at the same frequency and averts the expensive and time-consuming spectrum re-farming process.
The carrier has not yielded too many details, but did announce it will work with distributed antenna system (DAS), small cells and Wi-Fi provider Boingo Wireless to bring the 5G Ultra Wideband service indoors and to public spaces—airports, stadiums and arenas, office buildings and hotels. Verizon and Boingo are working together to build a hyper-dense network designed for large and small indoor spaces as part of the carrier’s ongoing 5G network expansions.
“Boingo is thrilled to work with Verizon to bring its 5G Ultra Wideband service to our venue partners,” Boingo CEO Mike Finely told Connected Real Estate Magazine in an emailed statement. “This is an exciting step for our business that will fuel an enhanced guest experience at our venues and set the stage for future growth at Boingo.”
Millimeter wave often gets criticized because of its limited propagation characteristics. When it comes to in-building coverage, chances of an outdoor-in coverage approach are remote, but Qualcomm’s exploratory testing indicates that MMwave could be used for in-building connectivity needs. That work includes creating a 5G NR millimeter wave network at company offices in New Jersey. The company is using three gNodeBs to cover around 30,000-square-feet.