“We will continue to deploy C-Band aggressively for mobility and FWA”: Verizon

Chris Halton

Keeping its focus on delivering the best network experiences for consumers and enterprise, Verizon is looking forward to deploying C-Band aggressively for mobility and fixed wireless access in addition to maintaining its network coverage and performance, including 5G and MEC.

Chris Halton, VP, Head of Product Strategy & Innovation at Verizon speaks with Zia Askari from TelecomDrive.com about the company’s 5G strategy and how Verizon is driving innovation in this space.

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What are the key priorities for Verizon when it comes to driving 5G?

When it comes to driving 5G, our key priority is delivering the best network experiences for consumers and enterprise-level organizations. We will continue to deploy C-Band aggressively for mobility and fixed wireless access in addition to maintaining our award winning network coverage and performance, including 5G and MEC. Looking to the future, Verizon will also enable new 5G use cases and experiences to subscribers all while delivering multiple models of private network, public MEC and private MEC for customer use cases.

How do you look at Industry 4.0 as a key enabler for 5G today?

Industry 4.0 is a key enabler for 5G service. Our 5G can deliver scalable, secure industrial cellular communications at high speeds, with lower latencies and massive capacity, offering the potential for enterprises to reimagine how and where they work. This level of performance and flexibility can deliver meaningful business outcomes and improve overall efficiency, quality and ultimately customer experiences. Industry 4.0 adoption is driving greater competition across industries and by extension increasing global trade competition by the leading countries.

What are some of the innovations that Verizon is enabling when it comes to delivering 5G experience?

Our 5G-powered use cases have evolved and expanded since the service was first rolled out. Today, we’re seeing even greater advancements in areas like mobile gaming and entertainment, AI and machine learning and AR/VR.

Private 5G is gaining a lot of ground today. What is your strategy to drive Private 5G for enterprise?

A private 5G network allows an enterprise to have a custom on-site 5G network that is tailored to their specific use case—providing fast, reliable connectivity with greater capacity and coverage than Wi-Fi. This 5G technology can be beneficial for things like manufacturing and IoT capabilities, venue-specific communications and smart city solutions. Adding private mobile edge computing (MEC) to that network moves computing power to the network’s edge–meaning the system can benefit from ultra-low latency in situations where analysis is needed in near-real-time.

We offer various private network SKUs based on size of the enterprise facility, use cases that need to be enabled, as well as the geographical locations. Verizon’s private network offerings include use of licensed spectrum and for some specific use cases, unlicensed spectrum (CBRS). We also offer options in the area of business model and ability to manage such network deployments.

What kind of growth are you looking for from 5G?

We expect to see continued growth from 5G in three main areas. The first is with 5G Ultra Wideband, in the adoption of 5G mobility by consumers and businesses. The second is with fixed wireless access (FWA): this is a key area of growth, and our strategy in this area continues to be validated as you see significant growth from FWA in the industry. The last is with private networks, especially with increased adoption of private MEC bundled with private networks for new enterprise use cases.

What are some of the big trends that you see driving ahead 5G today?

We’re seeing a greater increase in areas like advanced manufacturing, including robotics, automation and safety. Immersive experiences and metaverse-related use cases are also on the rise driven by 5G.  From a business side of things, we are also paying attention to enterprise digital transformation for increased efficiencies which lead to decentralized operations, IT/OT convergence and use of digital twins. Across the board, the major trend is an increase in adoption of digital first experiences.