Verizon CTO, Kyle Malady said that it is actually early with its 5G rollout, that is despite the changes that the company (and the world) had to endure. Thanks to the pandemic.
However, while 5G is available in 31 markets for Verizon, it's still pretty tough to find and connect to its 5G network. The reason for this is because Verizon is doing mmWave 5G first instead of Sub-6. We've explained the difference between the two, here.
With mmWave 5G, Verizon is focusing on speeds first and coverage later. Because mmWave is such high-band spectrum, it can't penetrate walls, or even trees. And really only covers a few feet at a time. In many markets, Verizon 5G is only available in a handful of streets and street corners.
Verizon is ahead of schedule with its aggressive 5G rollout goal
Malady stated that he is "happy to report we're ahead of plans right now in 5G in the United States." He also noted that Verizon had a very aggressive goal and that they "weren't exactly sure how COVID was going to impact us, especially in terms of getting permits and the ability to put up towers and get our fibers in, but once again, a roadblock shows up, we figure out ways to work it, so we can continue to move along."
Verizon isn't alone in progressing quite well with its 5G rollout, amid the pandemic. AT&T and T-Mobile have been rolling out 5G coverage quite quickly too. With T-Mobile refarming Sprint's 5G network to work with its network in a handful of cities.
The company is still planning to roll out its Sub-6 5G network later this year, which is going to drastically increase the coverage of its 5G network. And the good news is that all of the current 5G devices available from Verizon, will work on both Sub-6 and mmWave.
The BlueJeans acquisition fits in with its 5G strategy
Verizon says that it was looking at acquiring BlueJeans ahead of this pandemic, though with everyone working from home now, it made the acquisition a lot smarter. Malady says that the BlueJeans acquisition fits in with its strategy.
Stating that "as we move into 5G and the great benefits that 5G brings, video is going to be very important when you bring those capabilities out. It also fits into our portfolio of products that sell and make available to our enterprises, so it's a natural fit anyway."