Verizon Wireless Launches Digital Service in Bismark, North Dakota Area

BISMARCK, ND — After investing more than $7.75 million in its local wireless network, Verizon Wireless today announced the launch of digital wireless service in the Bismarck-Mandan area of North Dakota. The availability of digital service offers consumers and business customers many benefits including Caller ID, superior voice quality, longer battery life and enhanced privacy and security.

The new Verizon Wireless digital coverage area stretches along Interstate 94 from Glen Ullin west of Bismarck-Mandan to Steele, N.D. in the east. "We are excited about delivering all the benefits of digital service to area residents," said Rich Garwood, president of the Great Plains Region of Verizon Wireless. "North Dakota residents and visitors will now be able to enjoy clearer calls with less background noise and longer battery life with their phones."

Now that both digital and analog service is available, Verizon Wireless customers with dual-mode or tri-mode phones will be able to take advantage of digital service immediately. At the same time, analog customers will continue to enjoy their existing coverage and have the option to upgrade to a digital phone to enjoy the benefits of digital service.

The introduction of digital service in North Dakota is part of the company's $4 billion investment in 2001 to improve and expand its high quality coast-to-coast network, which covers 97 of the top 100 markets in the United States.

Along with the extensive nationwide network, Verizon Wireless' SingleRateSM national calling plan includes roaming and long distance across all 50 states. Verizon Wireless' local calling plans include free roaming in all of North and South Dakota as well as Sioux City, Iowa, East Grand Forks and Moorhead, Minn.

Verizon Wireless has been serving the North Dakota area since 1988 (originally as US WEST, then CONTEL and most recently COMMNET).

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 28.7 million wireless voice and data customers. The coast-to-coast wireless provider was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Verizon Wireless has a footprint covering more than 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 97 of the top 100 U.S. markets. The company, headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, is 40,000 employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more information about the company on the Web at