Verizon officially announced the launch of its next-generation data network. Based on LTE technology, the new network will officially open its doors in the market on December 5th,covering 38-cities and 60 airports around the continental U.S.The carrier plans to cover more of metro Detroit, including Wayne County, in 2011 after a signal interference snag is worked out with a Canadian TV station.
Verizon’s 4G LTE network will offer speeds that are 10 times faster than the carrier’s current 3G network, Senior Vice President and Chief Technical Officer Tony Melone said Wednesday.
Upon launch, two USB data-sticks — the LG VL600 and Pantech UML290 — will be available to consumers (no phones or Mifi). Both devices will be backward compatible with the company’s 3G, EVDO network and will retail for $99.99 with a signed 2-year contract and $50 mail-in rebate. Verizon will offer two data plans for its new high-speed network, a $50 monthly plan with a 5GB data allowance or an $80 monthly plan with a 10GB monthly allowance; overages on both plans will be billed at $10 per gigabyte.
Verizon boasts that speeds on the LTE network will range from 5 to 12Mbps on the downlink and 2 to 5Mbps on the uplink. Check out the full press release (below), which includes a full list of launch cities. Verizon will address LTE-enable smartphones at CES in Las Vegas this January and street-level coverage maps will be available starting this Sunday.