If you’re a Verizon customer interested in knowing exactly where you can take advantage of 5G, you’re in luck. Verizon has finally published a series of maps that give a better idea of exactly where the company’s 5G service is available.
The new maps detail specific streets and sections of streets that offer 5G connectivity, including in midtown Manhattan, Brooklyn, and other locations. Verizon’s 5G service is currently available in 18 cities — and according to Verizon, it’ll be available in 30 cities by the end of the year.
Verizon 5G coverage in downtown Manhattan
As can be seen in the maps, 5G connectivity is largely limited to streets and sidewalks — and not really inside the buildings on those streets and sidewalks. That’s because of the limitations of millimeter wave technology. Millimeter waves have trouble penetrating walls and other obstacles that other radio waves can move through. Verizon seems to be focusing on areas near landmarks and other locations where there might be a high concentration of people.
The fact that Verizon so heavily relies on millimeter wave technology could prove problematic for the carrier. Other carriers, like T-Mobile, use a combination of millimeter wave technology, along with midband and low-band spectrum, to help ensure that data connections are a little more robust, and can move through walls and other obstacles — even if the connection isn’t quite as fast as it would be on a millimeter wave connection.
Of course, 5G is still very much in its early days. To take advantage of the 5G connections that are available, you’ll need a 5G-capable phone — and there aren’t all that many 5G handsets available just yet. Verizon offers a few handsets, including the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, the Galaxy Note 10+ 5G, and the LG V50 ThinQ 5G.
Generally, it’s expected that 5G availability will seriously expand in 2020, with many carriers suggesting that they’ll offer nationwide networks. More handsets are also expected. Apple has been rumored to be adopting 5G for its lineup of phones in 2020, and has partnered with Qualcomm to supply the 5G modems needed.
Here’s a full list of locations where 5G is available, from all carriers.