Verizon CFO Matt Ellis has reiterated plans to pass 30 million homes in the US with its 5G network, as the operator has tested a data call on its first 5G-capable phone. (See Analyst: Verizon's Fixed 5G Is a Loss Leader for Mobile.)
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ)'s 30 million promise is the largest deployment announced for 5G broadband so far. "And so we certainly still see line of sight to getting to 30 million households in the US with that product over the next few years," Ellis said on the Morgan Stanley European Technology, Media & Telecom Broker Conference Call this morning. (See Analyst: Verizon's Fixed 5G Is a Loss Leader for Mobile.)
In contrast, T-Mobile US Inc. is promising 10 million homes passed in a few years after its launch in the first half of 2019. (See T-Mobile: 5G Lets Us Take Broadband Across America.)
Both operators plan to do this with 5G broadband networks that support mobile connections, a.k.a. the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) 5G New Radio standard (5G NR). T-Mobile will launch with 5G NR. Verizon launched with its 5GTF fixed specification first but Ellis has said they can upgrade to the mobile 3GPP standard "sometime" in 2019. (See Verizon CFO Expects Mobile 5G Service 'Sometime' in 2019.)
To that end, Verizon, Motorola Mobility LLC and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC) have tested the Motorola z3 Play -- with a 5G expansion module due in 2019 -- on a 3GPP standards-based 5G network, claiming "the world's first 5G data transmission on a smartphone on a commercial 3GPP 5G New Radio (NR) network."
This comes a couple of months after Verizon and Nokia claimed "the first call on [a] commercial 5G NR network." Note: Any call made on a 5G network will be a "data call" since it is a packet-based system. (Read all about it here: What Constitutes a Commercial 5G Network, Anyway?)
— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading