By Kelly Hill
In 2020, Verizon says to expect “a more aggressive build out of [its]5G network,” the use of dynamic spectrum sharing to improve its network efficiency, and new developments in mobile edge computing technology and related partnerships as it moves into the 5G era.
In a post on the carrier’s vision for the coming year, Verizon emphasized both network technology and content, and said that it is “poised to provide the platforms and tools businesses need to transform how industries operate, provide new and exciting consumer services, and improve our society.”
“We will continue to build our 5G network focusing on providing a differentiated experience in public spaces, continue to advance our 4G LTE and fiber networks to continue to provide the reliability customers have come to expect from Verizon, expand our Mobile Edge Compute technology to usher in an era of extremely low-latency applications for businesses and consumers, and ensure we are building strong ecosystems around all of these technologies and networks to speed new services and capabilities to market,” the carrier said.
Verizon ultimately beat its own stated goal of having 5G deployed in 30 cities by the end of 2019, reaching 31 at the end of December. The carrier noted that it has focused on building out in public spaces such as stadiums, arenas and downtown areas; it has launched millimeter wave-based 5G coverage in 16 National Football League stadiums around the country as well as four indoor basketball arenas.
In addition to the more aggressive 5G build-out, Verizon said to expect “greater innovation in how that 5G network is used, dynamic spectrum sharing to drive efficiency in how our spectrum resources are used, advancements in Mobile Edge Compute (MEC) technologies and partnerships, continued innovation in fiber technology and advancements in fiber deployments” as well as continuing its signature focus on network reliability.
Verizon also emphasized the role of content in current and developing 5G use cases, from a 5G production studio it inaugurated last year at RYOT in Los Angeles, California, to its partnership with Snap (parent of Snapchat) to develop augmented reality features that leverage 5G, and its ongoing partnerships to use 5G for live sports broadcasting. The carrier also said that during the course of 2019, it built out a fiber-based video distribution network that connects the 29 National Basketball Association arenas around the U.S.
On the enterprise side, the carrier pointed to the use of 5G at the Emmys to support business operations, as well as working with Corning to put together a 5G “factory of the future” and installing 5G at a Newport News shipyard. Verizon also touted its work in MEC, from a partnership with AWS Wavelength to the launch of its first MEC market — Chicago, Illinois — and work with gaming software companies and other players interested in edge computing and 5G, in its network of 5G labs.