Verizon Wireless, the largest cellular carrier in the United States, has confirmed that its 4G LTE cellular network now covers 500 markets in the US (across 49 states).
And number 50 is on the way. Verizon plans to add 4G LTE coverage to the state of Alaska next month, finally bringing the cellular carrier to 50 states.
Verizon has the largest 4G coverage map out of any carrier in the nation by far today. As Verizon notes, its 4G LTE network is available in 99% of the places that a Verizon 3G cellular signal can be found; this covers 95% of the United States population, which means 298 million people have the ability to access the Verizon 4G LTE cellular network (assuming they had a Verizon smartphone that supported 4G LTE).
The impact of 4G LTE is evident all around us. It has transformed the entire mobile ecosystem, inspiring new types of content to be created and consumed beyond the range of popular limited-range private and public Wi-Fi networks, including streaming video from a train and photo sharing from a mountain peak, chatting on Skype, or listening to Pandora on a long drive.
“4G LTE has made the high-speed, high-quality wireless experience a possibility as we travel throughout the United States. And, new uses are still being developed and introduced for appliances, cameras, cars and mobile health devices,” Verizon said in an announcement Thursday. “By 2020, forecasts from GMSA predict that 4G LTE will enable 24 billion connected devices.”
Verizon’s expansion has put enormous pressure on AT&T to keep up, as the nation’s second largest carrier has been launching new 4G LTE markets nearly every week to try to increase their coverage map by the end of the summer.