Verizon CTO Kyle Malady provided an update on the operator’s mobile 5G progress two and a half months after launch, noting it is using only about half of its available mmWave capacity in its initial markets.
Speaking at an investor conference, Malady said Verizon deployed 400MHz of mmWave spectrum thus far in Chicago and Minneapolis. He noted those assets are already yielding “crazy speeds” of over 2Gb/s, but added the operator is working to double the channel to 800MHz.
Since launch, Malady said Verizon has continuously tweaked its 5G network, “grinding out new features and fixes” through software updates “literally every other day”.
In addition to adding more spectrum, the operator is focused on nailing “seven or eight critical technical elements,” including beamforming and increasing the reach of its mmWave spectrum.
While Malady said he would welcome the addition of C-Band (3.7GHz-4.2GHz) spectrum to Verizon’s portfolio, he noted the operator’s contingency plan is to reallocate its existing low- and mid-band assets over time to create broad 5G coverage layers.
It is unclear what Verizon’s timeline for doing so would be, however, given it is currently in the process of recycling its CDMA spectrum for LTE.
Malady also revealed Verizon is currently trialling power-related innovations which could accelerate equipment installations as it deploys small cells in its quest to expand 5G coverage to 30 cities by the year end.
It teamed with electricity providers to develop a system delivering DC power over fibre rather than AC over dedicated lines.
“So when we’re running small cells up the street, we don’t have to connect power to each and every one of them”, Malady noted. “We think that could speed up our deployment time.”Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back