Update: July 18, 2019 (9:06 AM ET): Verizon has expanded its 5G network again, this time to parts of St. Paul, Minnesota. The carrier previously launched 5G in parts of St Paul’s sister city, Minneapolis. Verizon now has 5G support in portions of five U.S. cities, including Chicago, Denver, and Providence, Rhode Island.
Customers with 5G devices in St. Paul can check out the higher download speeds in parts of the downtown area, along with parts of the Lowertown and West Seventh neighborhoods around buildings and landmarks like the Minnesota Children’s Museum, the Minnesota Museum of American Art, the Fitzgerald Theater, Cathedral Hill Park and the Alexander Ramsey House.
Verizon also launched its first standalone 5G mobile hotspot. The Inseego 5G MiFi M1000 allows up to 15 devices to connect to the hotspot at the same time, and it supports 4G networks and speeds where the 5G networks are not available. It has a 4,400mAh battery that allows the hotspot to run up to 24 hours on a single charge. It’s available now for consumers and businesses for $27.08 a month for 24 months on a device payment plan, which makes the price of the hotspot $649.99 without a payment plan. There is also the option to purchase the hotspot for $499.99 with a two-year contract. Verizon customers who already own a smartphone with an unlimited smartphone plan can add a 5G MiFi M1000 to their account and get 50GB of 5G data per month, along with 15GB of 4G LTE data for $30 a month. If they just want the 5G hotspot, 5G data plans start at $85 a month.
As of today, there are five devices capable of connecting to Verizon’s 5G network. Aside from the new hotspot, there are four smartphones: the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, LG V50 ThinQ 5G, and the Moto Z3 and Moto Z4 with the optional 5G Moto Mod.
Original article: April 3, 2019 (12:14 PM ET): Verizon announced this morning that it is turning on its 5G ultra wideband service in Chicago and Minneapolis. Customers in these two cities should see download speeds of up to 1 Gbps, but only once they upgrade to a 5G smartphone.
As expected, 5G service will be heavily concentrated in the two launch cities. In Chicago, the service is available throughout the West Loop and the South Loop in addition to the Verizon store on The Magnificent Mile and throughout The Gold Coast, Old Town, and River North.
Minneapolis customers will have access to the 5G network in the Downtown area, around the U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis Convention Center, the Minneapolis Central Library, the Mill City Museum, Target Center and First Avenue venues, The Commons, areas of Elliot Park, and in the Verizon store in The Mall of America.
Verizon has previously stated that it plans to roll out its 5G network to 19 cities across the U.S. As this expansion happens, the carrier will likely increase the availability of its network throughout Chicago and Minneapolis.
Verizon customers with any unlimited plan, including Go Unlimited, Beyond Unlimited, or Above Unlimited plan can hop onto the 5G network for free for the first three months. After that, the carrier will charge an additional $10 on top of your normal monthly bill.
5G Moto Mod available today
As a part of this announcement, Verizon has kicked off sales of the 5G Moto Mod. The add-on accessory retails for $349.99 but is currently on sale for $199.99.
Verizon does require that customers have a Moto Z3 on their account before they will sell them the 5G Moto Mod. If you don’t have the handset already, you can pick it up for $10 a month for 24 months.
Click on the button below to grab the 5G Moto Mod directly from Verizon.