Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) extended the reach of its 4G LTE network on Thursday with the addition of 46 new markets, for a total of 304 markets. It also expanded its service in 22 markets where it already had a presence. Verizon first started offering LTE in late 2010, and was followed by rival AT&T (NYSE:T), which said last month it had a presence in 39 LTE markets. Sprint (NYSE:S) has plans to start a network this summer, with the first six markets expected to be up by the end of June, while T-Mobile will begin its roll-out next year.
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According to Verizon, its high-speed network offers between 5 Mbps and 12 Mbps on downlinks and between 2 Mbps and 5 Mbps on the uplink. In all, Verizon offers 24 LTE smartphones and tablets, including the new Samsung Galaxy S III. Verizon’s new Share Everything data plans are supposed to be launched on June 28. While existing customers are not required to move to the new plan that lets multiple devices share the same data connection, new customers won’t have a choice.
The 46 new markets going live on Thursday are: Florence, Alabama; Harrison, Arkansas; Yuba City/Marysville, California; Panama City, Florida; Carrolton, Gainesville and Newnan, Georgia; Blackfoot, Idaho; Decatur/Effingham, Kankakee/Bradley-Bourbonnais and La Salle/Peru/Ottawa, Illinois; Columbus and Michigan City/La Porte, Indiana; GreaterPortland, Maine; Greenville/Greenwood, Jackson and Tunica, Mississippi; Houghton and Traverse City, Michigan; Jefferson City, Lake of the Ozarks and West Plains, Missouri; Binghamton, Elmira/Corning/Hornell and Oneonta, New York; Burlington, Hickory/Lenoir, Jacksonville and New Bern, North Carolina; Bedford and Sharon/Farrell/Hermitage, Pennsylvania; Anderson, Florence and Greenwood, South Carolina; Lufkin/Nacogdoches, Midland, San Angelo and Waco, Texas; Danville, Virginia; Ashland, Kentucky/Huntington, West Virginia and Logan, West Virginia; Fond du Lac, Janesville/Beloit and Sheboygan, Wisconsin; and Gillette, Wyoming. The service in the Lihue, Hawaii market has been running since June 11.
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