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Verizon’s McAdam: Everyone else is playing catch-up

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 3:22pm
Andrew Berg, Wireless Week

Lowell McAdamVerizon Wireless will use its lead in deploying LTE to get even further out ahead of the competition.

During a presentation at the UBS Investor conference that was broadcast online this morning, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam wasn't shy about where he feels his company's network is in relation to competitors, saying that other Tier 1 carriers are playing "catch-up" in the LTE race.

It's hard to argue that point. Verizon currently covers more than 75 percent of the country, or 250 million POPs, with its LTE network, and the company plans on expanding that to cover at least 10 million more people by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, Verizon Wireless' nearest competitor, AT&T Mobility, will have hit its goal of covering 150 million people by the end of the year. Sprint will have 120 million people covered by the end of the year, and T-Mobile USA expects to begin its deployment next year.

McAdam said Verizon's competitors will need more than just a couple of quarters to catch up, and Verizon will use that lead to start looking toward future technologies like "5G and 6G."

Verizon's faster network is apparently being put to good use. McAdam said that the company saw more tablets hit the network over the Thanksgiving holiday, and the company's shared data plans have caught on better than expected.

McAdam, who has continually predicted more mergers and acquisitions in the United States, also praised both Softbank's $2.1 billion purchase of a controlling stake in Sprint Nextel, as well as T-Mobile's USA's pending purchase of MetroPCS. He said that "four healthy competitors" in the market is better for everyone.

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