The folks at Verizon Wireless are working hard on their 4G LTE network. They hope to have one-third of their customers covered by the end of this year, and say that eventually the 4G network will surpass their existing CDMA network. They may be making some progress as a leaked internal document shows them transitioning their internal database from CDMA-specific wording….
It’s still baking our noodles to think about a Verizon device using a SIM on American soil — but sure enough, those cards allegedly set up in Big Red’s systems are floating around in the wild.
This document, which BoyGenius at BGR got his hands on, says very clearly for Verizon Employees, “In order to support future 4G devices, the ESN/MEID field in all VZW systems will be changed to Device ID effective 7/18/2010.” The ESN/MEID is an identification number/system used by CDMA phones to identify customers on the network (similar to the SIM card in proper, uh, GSM networks).
Since LTE will (presumably) use a different system than CDMA, it looks like Verizon is thinking ahead by transitioning their intranet database systems from the CDMA-specific “ESN/MEID” to Device ID.
What you’re looking at here is a SIM that will slot into Verizon’s LTE-enabled 4G devices when they launch later this year (hence the big “4G” logo on there), and yes, they look just like the SIMs you’ve been using for the last two decades on carriers around the world. The more things change, the more they stay the same, it seems.
Does this mean that Verizon is close to flipping the switch on their 4G network? We’ve heard the date November 15th mentioned over and over again in relation to when VZW’s LTE 4G network could go live – but nothing has been confirmed and none of the rumors really seem substantial or detailed. Until then, Verizon customers will have to wait.