Verizon announces 5G service launch along with compatible smartphone

Verizon has announced it will debut its 5G Ultra Wideband network in Chicago and Minneapolis next month, while simultaneously launching the networks new, exclusive 5G moto mod. When attached to the back of Motorola’s moto z3, the 5G moto mod will immediately turn that device into the world’s first 5G-enabled smartphone. Verizon plans to bring its 5G Ultra Wideband network to more than 30 cities across the U.S by the end of the year.

“Continuing our track record of 5G ‘firsts,’ we are thrilled to bring the first 5G-upgradeable smartphone exclusively to Verizon customers,” said Verizon’s chief technology officer, Kyle Malady. “Not all 5G networks are the same. Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband network is built by the company with the nation’s best and most reliable 4G LTE network. It will change the way we live, work, learn and play, starting in Chicago and Minneapolis and rapidly expanding to more than 30 U.S. markets this year.”

Beginning on March 14, customers can pre-order the 5G moto mod, so that they may receive the device in time for the 5G Ultra Wideband rollouts in Chicago and Minneapolis. To add incentive to the launch, Verizon is also offering customers who pre-order the moto mod a free moto z3, when they activate a new line of service on a device payment plan.

“At Motorola we proudly deliver innovations, like the 5G moto mod and moto z3, that change how people connect with each other and use technology in daily life,” said Rudi Kalil, vice president and general manager, North America at Motorola. “We’re very excited that the transformative 5G moto mod developed at our HQ in Chicago will soon be used by our own community, in addition to Minneapolis, to bring our bright 5G future to life.”

Last October, Verizon launched its first commercial 5G Ultra Wideband network, with the integration of 5G Home broadband internet services in Los Angeles, Houston, Sacramento and Indianapolis. While the first 5G Home service relies on an earlier version of 5G technology, the 5G Mobility services rely on NR standards developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP).