Verizon told to be more realistic about 5G coverage claims

The National Advertising Division, which runs the ad industry’s self-regulatory system and is part of BBB National Programs, has asked Verizon to stop making misleading claims about their 5G coverage and speeds. The ads specifically referenced by the NAD imply that Verizon’s 5G serviec is available across the country and that customers will experience speeds up to 2Gbps, which is unrealistic and inaccurate.

Verizon’s mmWave 5G network does offer very fast speeds, but the coverage is extremely limited and doesn’t typically penetrate building. Per the NAD, Verizon’s claim that “people from midtown Manhattan to downtown Denver can experience what your 5G can deliver” is misleading and the carrier should be more clear about the limitations of the network and coverage.

Verizon prepares to shift to 5G standalone core

All U.S. carriers deployed their initial 5G networks in non-standalone (NSA) mode, which relies on 4G LTE as its backbone. With 5G standalone, the 5G network is entirely separate from the carriers’ 4G infrastructure, which will offer some major benefits.

Verizon has completed their first test data session on its 5G standalone core network, and they are on track to start shifting traffic over from the current 4G-backed network to the standalone 5G network later this year.

“The 5G standalone core is critical for unleashing the most advanced benefits of 5G technology including remarkable levels of programmability to manage the advanced solutions and exponential traffic that 5G will bring,” said Bill Stone, Vice President of Planning for Verizon.

Verizon’s 5G standalone core is comprised of software applications, compute, networking, and storage, and also combines built-in artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML). These technologies will let Verizon allocate network resources for specific applications (AKA “network slicing”) and automate network configuration changes, meaning they will be able to scale up or down to prioritize certain services and resources as needed.

Verizon anticipates to be ready for full commercialization of its 5G standalone core in 2021.

T-Mobile shuts down legacy Sprint 5G network as merger moves forward

Sprint and T-Mobile’s big merger went through earlier this year, and they have been making changes as they combine forces on their networks. The latest changes is that T-Mobile is shutting down Sprint’s original 5G network, a process they started in April. T-Mobile is now utilizing Sprint’s 2.5GHz spectrum to augment its own 5G network.

T-Mobile has already re-deployed the 2.5GHz spectrum as part of their 5G network in New York City and in parts of Chicago, Houston, and Los Angeles. New York City is currently the only city that has T-Mobile’s low-band, mid-band, and mmWave 5G.

Some existing Sprint 5G smartphone users are now left without 5G access, unfortunately. Older Sprint 5G smartphones that used the Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 modem will not be able to connect to T-Mobile’s new 5G network. These phones include the Sprint OnePlus 7 Pro 5G, Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, and LG V50 ThinQ 5G. Other models launched more recently will continue to work on T-Mobile’s network and won’t be impacted by this change.

AT&T brings 5G to 137 more cities, aiming for nationwide coverage by the end of the year

AT&T launched 5G service in 137 more markets around the country this week, and AT&T senior executive vice president John Stephens told shareholders this week that the company will bring 5G nationwide this summer. Their coverage has already increased substantially in 2020, with 120 million people covered with AT&T 5G at the end of the first quarter and 160 million people in 327 after the addition of this week’s 137 launches.

“While many of us have been working from home for the past three months, AT&T’s network team continued to build and test our network so that we could emerge from this season with stronger, broader 5G coverage for our customers across the country,” said Chris Sambar, EVP of Technology Operations. “Whether it’s getting you back to work, back to school, or back to play, we’ve got you covered with the fastest wireless speeds in the nation.”

Below the is full list of new markets launched this week:


  1. Anniston
  2. Dothan
  3. Florence
  4. Gadsden
  5. Mobile
  6. Tuscaloosa


  1. Anchorage


  1. Clay County
  2. Cleburne County
  3. Cross County
  4. Franklin County
  5. Madison County
  6. Pope County


  1. Alpine County
  2. Fresno
  3. Kings County
  4. Salinas
  5. Sierra County
  6. Stockton
  7. Visalia-Tulare


  1. Fort Collins-Loveland
  2. Greeley


  1. Calhoun County
  2. Citrus County
  3. Collier County
  4. Fort Myers
  5. Fort Walton Beach
  6. Gainesville
  7. Glades County
  8. Jefferson County
  9. Lakeland
  10. Tallahassee
  11. Walton County


  1. Atlanta
  2. Bleckley County
  3. Early County
  4. Jasper County
  5. Warren County


  1. Elmore County


  1. Adams County
  2. Aurora-Elgin
  3. Bureau County
  4. Champaign-Urbana
  5. Clay County
  6. Joliet
  7. Montgomery County
  8. Springfield
  9. Vermilion County


  1. Bloomington
  2. Decatur County
  3. Huntington County
  4. Kosciusko County
  5. Muncie
  6. Newton County
  7. Randolph County
  8. Warren County


  1. Lawrence


  1. Spencer County


  1. Baton Rouge
  2. Caldwell Parish
  3. Claiborne Parish
  4. Iberville Parish
  5. Lafayette
  6. Monroe
  7. Morehouse Parish
  8. St. James Parish
  9. West Feliciana Parish


  1. Portland


  1. Cumberland
  2. Hagerstown
  3. Kent County


  1. Alger County
  2. Allegan County
  3. Benton Harbor
  4. Manistee County
  5. Muskegon


  1. Jackson


  1. Moniteau County


  1. Lander County

New Mexico

  1. Lincoln County
  2. San Juan County

New York

  1. Chautauqua County
  2. Elmira
  3. Jefferson County
  4. Poughkeepsie

North Carolina

  1. Anson County
  2. Hickory


  1. Ashtabula County
  2. Columbiana County
  3. Lima
  4. Mansfield
  5. Williams County
  6. Youngstown


  1. Lincoln County
  2. Medford
  3. The Dalles


  1. Altoona
  2. Bedford County
  3. Bradford County
  4. Huntingdon County
  5. Jefferson County
  6. Lawrence County
  7. Lebanon County
  8. Sharon

Rhode Island

  1. Newport County

South Carolina

  1. Anderson
  2. Calhoun County
  3. Laurens County
  4. Oconee County


  1. Chattanooga
  2. Fayette County
  3. Giles County
  4. Maury County
  5. Memphis
  6. Nashville


  1. Amarillo
  2. Brownsville
  3. Bryan-College Station
  4. Galveston
  5. Killeen-Temple
  6. Parmer County
  7. Runnels County
  8. Tyler


  1. Beaver County


  1. Caroline County
  2. Danville


  1. Okanogan County
  2. Olympia
  3. Pacific County

West Virginia

  1. Charleston
  2. Grant County
  3. Huntington-Ashland
  4. Tucker County


  1. Kenosha
  2. Racine
  3. Sheboygan
  4. Wood County

Samsung Galaxy S20 for Verizon sacrifices RAM for mmWave 5G

The new Galaxy S20 for Verizon supports Ultra Wideband (UW) millimeter-wave 5G, Verizon’s super fast 5G network. However, the Verizon UW 5G-capable model lacks some features available on the standard S20 available for other carriers (which can connect to 5G, but not the millimeter-wave frequencies).

The Verizon version of the Galaxy S20 5G UW has 8GB of RAM, while the standard Galaxy S20 has 12GB. The Verizon model also does not include a microSD card slot. “We had to make certain design and hardware decisions to provide a device with the form factor and price point as other S20 models,” a Samsung spokesperson explained.

The Galaxy S20 5G UW for Verizon and the standard Galaxy S20 both retail for $999.99.

T-Mobile roaming deal makes 5G available in all 50 states

Thanks to a roaming deal with Alaskan provider GCI, T-Mobile now offers 5G coverage in all 50 states. The roaming agreement allows T-Mobile subscribers in Anchorage to utilize 5G via GCI’s network. T-Mobile also said that the coverage could expand to Fairbanks, Juneau and “other fiber-served communities.”

T-Mobile’s 5G network does not cover all areas of any of the country, but having coverage available in at least parts of each of the states is a big benefit for travelers or anyone who wants to be able to enjoy 5G service in as many locations as possible.

San Diego partners with Verizon to deploy more 5G

The city of San Diego and Verizon Wireless came together this week to announce the citywide expansion of 5G wireless service. The demand for faster internet service throughout the city has increased dramatically in recent months thanks to the stay at home order, with residents needing to work and participate in school online, and remote services like digital medical appointments skyrocketing.

San Diego and Verizon reached an agreement to accelerate the deployment of 5G, with San Diego providing Verizon with a streamlined permit process in exchange for making the high-speed network available to communities faster and more efficiently.

“The pandemic is transforming everything from healthcare to school to business, and San Diego is making sure we have the technology to transform along with it. At a time when San Diegans are relying on the internet to remotely work and learn and stay healthy, the City and Verizon’s partnership is accelerating the availability of fast 5G connections,” said Mayor Kevin Faulconer.

The 5G service launched Thursday will be initially available in Mission Valley near Westfield Mission Valley and SDCCU Stadium, Linda Vista along Linda Vista Road, Kensington near El Cajon Boulevard, and Bankers Hill on 1st Avenue.

First responders can get free 5G service from T-Mobile

In a video published this week, T-Mobile President and CEO Mike Sievert discussed their “Connecting Heroes” program, which makes 5G access free of charge to public and nonprofit first responder agencies for 10 years.

“When we’re at our most vulnerable, first responders are there for us … and they are under more pressure today than ever before. Connecting Heroes is one way we’re saying ‘thank you’ in this critical time,” Sievert said. “People who save lives shouldn’t have to choose between life-saving equipment and wireless service. And with Connecting Heroes, they won’t have to. We’re not limiting this program to a few months or a year … first responders can get free service including 5G access, for a full decade.” 

T-Mobile’s program is expected to save fire, EMS and police departments across the U.S. billions of dollars, eliminating network connectivity costs from their budgets. T-Mobile estimates the program could save $7.7 billion over the next 10 years if all eligible agencies opt in.

Comcast Xfinity Mobile 5G service on Verizon’s network now available

Xfinity Mobile, a division of Comcast, has launched 5G service which operates on Verizon’s network. The Verizon 5G network is available in parts of 34 markets nationwide, and where it isn’t available, the service will use Verizon LTE or Comcast Wi-Fi infrastructure.

New plan options were launched in conjunction with the 5G announcement. Pricing starts as low as $15 per month for up to 1GB of data, and residential users have the option to sign up for unlimited service for $45 per month (although speeds are scaled back after 20GB are used).

Rui Costa, Senior Vice President of Innovation & Customer Value Propositions at Comcast Cable said this about the launch: “From day one, Xfinity Mobile has been proud to be the only provider to empower customers to design a mobile plan that fit their needs, as well as have the flexibility to seamlessly switch between unlimited or per gig to save money. We’re excited to now extend that benefit with 5G data plans.”

AT&T promises 15 5G-capable devices in 2020

In an interview with CNET’s Daily Charge podcast, AT&T CEO Jeff McElfresh discussed the network’s 5G rollout, including their plans to make 5G more accessible by offering more devices. “You should not assume that 5G is an exclusive capability for the most expensive handsets, and found only in the most expensive rate plans,” he said. AT&T plans to launch 15 devices with 5G capabilities this year.

McElfresh also discussed how AT&T may focus on serving business users, possibly by reserving access to AT&T’s fastest 5G network on the millimeter wave spectrum strictly for higher end plans. But he also noted that AT&T will “definitely be reactive to the way the market responds,” making changes to their offerings as 5G continues to develop.