TUSCALOOSA, AL — Verizon Wireless announced today it is bringing its wide-area wireless broadband service to the Greater Tuscaloosa area and the University of Alabama, giving local customers access to the latest high-speed business and entertainment services on their wireless phones, laptop computers and other wireless devices. Tuscaloosa joins Birmingham, Huntsville, Mobile and Montgomery in the company's coast-to-coast broadband network.
With this launch, Verizon Wireless customers in the greater Tuscaloosa area are able to access the company's two wireless broadband services BroadbandAccess and V CAST while traveling throughout the city.
BroadbandAccess is the company's high-speed wireless broadband network geared toward mobile professionals and business customers. It provides average access speeds of 400-700 kilobits per second (kbps). The service gives customers the ability to connect to the Internet using a PC Card that slides directly into most laptop computers and enables a download of a 1 Megabyte e-mail attachment (the equivalent of a small PowerPoint® presentation or a large PDF file) in about 20 seconds.
V CAST is a consumer-oriented multimedia service that offers music and video content on demand, including news, weather and sports updates, clips from popular TV programs, music videos, movie trailers, 3D games and more. With V CAST Music, customers can browse and download songs from the V CAST Music library directly onto their V CAST Music-enabled phone or Windows® XP-enabled PC. The V CAST Music library contains more than 1.5 million songs.
Both services are based on the company's Evolution-Data Optimized (EV-DO) network technology.
"The thriving business community of Tuscaloosa coupled with the University of Alabama, a major, comprehensive, research university has created a dynamic, tech-savvy city that demands the latest, innovative technology and mobile data solutions," said Jeff Mango, president of Verizon Wireless' Alabama / Georgia Region. "The expansion of our broadband network delivers mobile professionals and students a desktop experience out of the office. Consumers also have access to premiere entertainment services including downloadable music, high-quality videos and advanced gaming."
Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess area for greater Tuscaloosa delivers continuous coverage between the city and Birmingham totaling more than 1200 square miles. The wide-area broadband network will cover from Tuscaloosa northeast on I-20 to Birmingham and southwest on I-20 to the Greene County line. In addition, coverage includes the University of Alabama campus, Lake Tuscaloosa and extends west on US Highway 82, through the town of Coker and north along US Highway 43, to north of Samantha.
Customers who travel outside a BroadbandAccess coverage area with an EV-DO device will switch seamlessly to Verizon Wireless' existing NationalAccess network in which customers experience average data transmission speeds between 60 and 80 kbps, with bursts up to 144 kbps.
Verizon Wireless was the first national wireless provider to commercially launch a high-speed wireless broadband network in the United States. Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network coverage area covers about 200 million Americans. Verizon Wireless has invested nearly $200 million this year alone to expand and enhance its wireless network across Alabama and Georgia to stay ahead of the growing demand for its products and services.
BroadbandAccess provides mobile workers full access to their corporate information as if they were attached to the information via a high-speed wired connection, but with the freedom of true mobility. Developed with a range of users in mind, the service enables large enterprises, small- to medium-sized businesses and mobile professionals to conduct business anytime, anywhere in the BroadbandAccess coverage area via a secure, true high-speed data connection.
As an example of the productivity benefits the company's wireless broadband provides to mobile and business professionals, construction supervisors can capture important details about building projects and wirelessly transmit the information to the contractor; food and beverage company representatives can re-order stock wirelessly while at the point of sale; and realtors can browse the latest Multiple Listing Service (MLS) listings from a client's living room and manage other tasks via BroadbandAccess-powered PDAs or laptops.
The company's high-speed network also enables its V CAST multimedia service, which offers consumers the ability to download full-length songs right to Verizon Wireless phones or via PCs. Customers can download songs directly to their phone for $1.99 and receive two copies of each song: one for the phone and one to download onto their PC. Or they can purchase songs online for 99 cents each and download a copy onto their phone via a USB cable for free. To access V CAST video content and games, customers need a V CAST-enabled phone and a $15.00 monthly subscription added to their Verizon Wireless calling plan.
For a limited time, Verizon Wireless customers with a new or existing voice plan can receive unlimited BroadbandAccess service for $59.99 monthly access for Internet browsing, e-mail and intranet access. A new two-year customer agreement is required. For non-voice customers, BroadbandAccess is available for $79.99 monthly access with a new one- or two-year customer agreement. The company's BroadbandAccess service is also available as an integrated option on select notebook computers.
For more information about Verizon Wireless products and services, visit a local Verizon Wireless Communications Store or go to www.verizonwireless.com.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 57 million customers. The largest US wireless company and largest wireless data provider, based on revenues, Verizon Wireless is headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 60,000 employees nationwide. The company 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 preview and request 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.