ST. LOUIS, MO — Verizon Wireless announced today it has launched its Evolution-Data Optimized (EV-DO) third generation (3G) wide-area network in St. Louis, the metropolitan area's first operational 3G network.
The EV-DO network enables two new services for Verizon Wireless customers:
- BroadbandAccess, the nation's fastest wide-area wireless Internet access service geared toward business professionals, with average user speeds of 400-700 kilobits per second (kbps)
- V CAST, a consumer-oriented service that offers short content on demand, including live-action 3-D games, music videos, news, weather, sports and more
"The launch of EV-DO with BroadbandAccess and V CAST services provides Verizon Wireless customers in St. Louis with the latest in mobile wireless data technology, enabling them to stay connected, informed and entertained via their wireless phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week," said Mark Crumpton, presidentKansas/Missouri Region, Verizon Wireless.
St. Louis is the latest metropolitan market to be added to Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network coverage footprint since BroadbandAccess service was initially launched in September 2004. Verizon Wireless plans to expand its 3G EV-DO network to double its coverage by the end of 2005.
BroadbandAccess provides mobile workers full access to their corporate information, just as if they were attached to it via a high-speed wired connection, but with the freedom of true mobility. Developed with a range of users in mind, the service allows large enterprises, small-medium businesses and mobile professionals to conduct business anytime, anywhere in the BroadbandAccess coverage area via a secure, true high-speed data connection. Business customers can access information when they are on the road-at customer locations, at job sites, in taxis, or on Metrolink-faster than any competing national wide-area technology.
With data transmission bursts up to above 2 megabits per second (Mbps), BroadbandAccess customers could download a 1 megabyte email attachment (for example, a small PowerPoint presentation or a large PDF file), or receive three digital pictures (each 400 x 600 pixels) in less than 20 seconds, which is three to four times faster than using EDGE service, and as much as ten times faster than on a competitor's GPRS network. And, because the service is backward compatible-a distinct advantage of using CDMA technology-customers who travel outside a BroadbandAccess coverage area with an EV-DO device will switch seamlessly to Verizon Wireless' existing NationalAccess network, based on 1xRTT technology.
"This service gives our enterprise customers two key advantages in wireless communication-speed and mobility," said Crumpton. "With that comes an increase in productivity and bottom-line business benefits."
Launched in February 2005, V CAST delivers crystal clear short content on demand, live-action 3-D games, music videos and much more to wireless phones that run on the Verizon Wireless broadband EV-DO 3G network. The V CAST coverage area, which mirrors Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network, is available in more than 30 major metropolitan areas and at many of the nation's busiest airports.
V CAST offers increased download speed, advanced messaging and imaging and data transfer functions. With V CAST-enabled phones, consumers can stream video clips-up to 5 minutes in length-straight to the phone with transmission speeds capable of bursts of 2.0 megabits per second (Mbps).
Customers in St. Louis can access V CAST on select new Verizon Wireless handsets and immediately play games and view video from a variety of sources, including CNN, NBC, Fox Sports and Comedy Central. Customers also can view new short programs designed specifically for mobile phones-called "mobisodes" of popular television shows.
In metro St. Louis, Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess and V CAST service coverage includes all of St. Louis City and County, and spreads into neighboring Missouri and Illinois counties.
In Missouri, coverage stretches north along Interstate 70 into the Wentzville area of St. Charles County. It extends west along Interstates 64/40 across the Boone Bridge, and southwest along Interstate 44 to Eureka. The coverage has a southernmost reach along Interstate 55 in the Arnold area of Jefferson County.
In Illinois, the coverage radius encircles an area just north of Alton in Madison County and eastward through southern Macoupin County. It stretches along I-70, east of Highland in Madison County and along I-64 to the Mascoutah area. Coverage continues southward across Belleville and much of St. Clair County, and into the Columbia area of Monroe County.
BroadbandAccess service is priced at $79.99 monthly access for unlimited use with a one- or two-year agreement. For a limited time, Verizon Wireless customers with unlimited use data plans can buy the Novatel v620 air card for $49.99 with a two-year customer agreement or $99.99 with a one-year customer agreement after a $100 rebate.
BroadbandAccess customers can manage their remote access needs with VZ Access Manager, a customizable tool included with each air card device that simplifies remote access while allowing users to stay connected to business-critical correspondence and documents.
For a $15 monthly access fee, in addition to their regular Verizon Wireless calling plan, V CAST customers in St. Louis will receive unlimited access to a wide array of updated short-form video programming from leading content providers like Nickelodeon, VH1 and AccuWeather. V CAST's array of hot new multimedia programming is located in the Get It Now® virtual store where customers can access video from favorite news, sports and entertainment providers in the getFLIX shopping aisle and check out new cutting-edge 3-D games in the getGAMES aisle. V CAST also gives customers unlimited access to Verizon Wireless' Mobile Web 2.0SM news and information service. V CAST-enabled phones available today include the LG VX8000 and the Samsung a890. Each phones retail for $149.00 after $70 rebates. The Audiovox 8940 is available for $179.99 after a $70 rebate.
For more information about Verizon Wireless products and services, visit a Verizon Wireless Communications Store, call 1-800-2 JOIN IN or go to www.verizonwireless.com.
(EDITORS: Broadcast-quality B-roll footage about V CAST and BroadbandAccess is available online. Log on to www.thenewsmarket.com/verizonwireless to preview and request video segments, which can be received in newsrooms digitally, by tape or via satellite.)
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 45.5 million voice and data customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, N.J., Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.
NOTE: This press release contains statements about expected future events and financial results that are forward-looking and subject to risks and uncertainties. For those statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The following important factors could affect future results and could cause those results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements: materially adverse changes in economic conditions in the markets served by us, an adverse change in the ratings afforded our debt securities or those of Verizon Communications by nationally accredited ratings organizations, the effects of the substantial competition that exists in our markets, which has been intensifying, and which may intensify further as a result of local number portability regulations that allow wireless customers to retain their phone numbers when switching wireless service providers, our ability to obtain sufficient financing to satisfy our substantial capital requirements, including to fund capital expenditures, debt repayment and distributions to our owners, our ability to obtain sufficient spectrum licenses, particularly in our most densely populated areas, our ability to develop future business opportunities, including wireless data services, and to continue to adapt to the changing conditions in the wireless industry, our ability to receive satisfactory service from our key vendors and suppliers, our ability to generate additional subscribers, with acceptable levels of churn, from resellers and distributors of our service, material changes in available technology, and technology substitution that could impact the popularity and usage of our technology, our continued provision of satisfactory service to our subscribers at an acceptable cost, in order to reduce churn, the impact of continued unionization efforts with respect to our employees, regulatory developments, including new regulations that could increase our cost of doing business or reduce demand for our services, developments in connection with existing or future litigation, and changes in our accounting assumptions that regulatory agencies, including the SEC, may require or that result from changes in the accounting rules or their application, which could result in an impact on earnings.