Make no mistake, this service will be extremely limited in availability, and today's launch is coming more than a week ahead of its originally planned April 11rollout (for obvious reasons).
Outside of those areas, meanwhile, your 5G device will fall back onto 4G LTE.
Verizon has turned on its first 5G smartphone service in the United States, going live a week earlier than expected, though subscribers will need a new device in order to actually access the swifter speeds. "Verizon launched the first commercial broadband 5G service last October, Verizon 5G Home, and now we're lighting up our 5G Ultra Wideband network in Chicago and Minneapolis, providing the world's first commercial 5G mobile service with a 5G-enabled smartphone".
In Chicago, 5G coverage is concentrated in areas of the West Loop and the South Loop, around landmarks like Union Station, Willis Tower, The Art Institute of Chicago, Millennium Park and The Chicago Theatre. It's starting with Minneapolis and Chicago, but only select areas of those markets.
Aside from the hands-on in the Magnificent Mile Verizon Store where the launch event took place, we knew getting to experience 5G in the wild might take a bit of work. Thankfully, Verizon's PR crew has not been shy about posting some early numbers.
We're going to continue to test the advent of 5G in Chicago this week, so stay tuned for updates on how the service functions for us and the top speeds we hit. However, the company is pushing the 5G Mod accessory for the previously launched Moto Z3. Moto Z3 owners are now getting an update delivering support for the 5G Moto Mod, and if that weren't nice enough, the update also just so happens to bring Android 9 Pie to the phone. Because the first country to offer widespread 5G networks will see its economy get a boost from new services and businesses generated by the faster data speeds.
So, while the 5G network is clearly the faster of the two, it's not by an order of magnitude.
On a related note, what in the hell is that "5G UWB" logo?
It should be noted that to access 5G service, you will first need to have a Go Unlimited, Beyond Unlimited or Above Unlimited plan.