WALNUT CREEK, CA — Building on its successful strategy to provide customers superior wireless services, Verizon Wireless' regional president Rich Garwood today announced that two award-winning services are available throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, one developed for the consumer market, the other primarily for business customers. BroadbandAccess, the fastest wide-area wireless Internet access service available in the nation, and V CAST, the nation's first wide-area wireless broadband multimedia service for consumers, are both available today in the Bay Area. Both services run on the company's high-speed EV-DO (Evolution Data-Optimized) wireless broadband network, the only national wide-area wireless broadband network available in the country today, available in 60 major metropolitan markets and 64 major airports from coast to coast.
Verizon Wireless is first to deliver wide-area wireless broadband services to the Bay Area, which began with the launch of its EV-DO network at the three major San Francisco Bay Area airports earlier this summer. Today, Verizon Wireless' wide-area wireless broadband services are available in the Bay Area from the city of San Francisco, along the Peninsula through San Jose, and in the East Bay including Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The company will enhance the network in this initial coverage area and expand the wide-area wireless broadband network to the Greater Bay Area before the end of the year.
"The launch of our high-speed wireless broadband network in the Bay Area provides customers with state-of-the art technology," said Rich Garwood, Northern California/Nevada regional president for Verizon Wireless. "With V CAST, consumers can access the latest in multimedia programming to stay connected, informed and entertained via their wireless phones. For mobile professionals, BroadbandAccess provides full access to their corporate information, just as if they were attached via a high-speed wired connection, but with the freedom of true mobility."
The company also announced today the launch of its wide-area wireless broadband network in Sacramento. Verizon Wireless' strategy includes adding new markets, and expanding network coverage in existing markets and the company is on track to cover half of the U.S. population by the end of 2005.
BroadbandAccessThe company's nationally recognized BroadbandAccess service, available to mobile professionals and enterprise customers, allows Bay Area customers to connect wirelessly to the Internet via their laptop at broadband speeds, a convenient way to conduct business. The nation's largest and fastest wide-area wireless broadband service, BroadbandAccess is faster than any competing wide-area wireless data service. With BroadbandAccess, customers can download a 1 Megabyte email attachment (for example, a small PowerPoint presentation or a large PDF file), or receive three digital pictures (each 400 x 600 pixels) in less than 20 seconds. Because EV-DO technology is backward compatible a distinct advantage to using CDMA technology customers who travel outside a BroadbandAccess coverage area with an EV-DO device will seamlessly switch to Verizon Wireless' existing NationalAccess service, which runs on the company's 1xRTT network.
"Bay Area customers can enjoy the speed, mobility and productivity benefits of our BroadbandAccess service not only here, but when they travel as well," said Garwood. "Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network is the nation's largest and fastest wide-area wireless broadband network, giving BroadbandAccess customers a superior, secure wireless data experience while away from the office."
Working with virtual private network (VPN) connections, business customers can use BroadbandAccess as an extension of their corporate local area network (LAN) or intranet, allowing them to work from any location within the BroadbandAccess coverage area, as if they were in the office. BroadbandAccess, with typical user download speeds of 400-700 kilobits per second (kbps), is ideal for downloading files and business-critical information residing behind corporate firewalls and for accessing e-mail, intranets and the Internet. BroadbandAccess' EV-DO technology has its own data protection and authentication and is designed to work with a business' existing IT infrastructure and security solutions.
In an effort to bring the speed and mobility of Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess to more of its customers, Verizon Wireless also announced today a promotional cost-savings of 25 percent for its new and existing voice customers. Now business customers with a voice plan can receive unlimited BroadbandAccess for $59.99 monthly access when they sign up for any of the America's ChoiceSM calling plans of $39.99 and above with a new two-year customer agreement. For non-voice customers, BroadbandAccess is available for $79.99 monthly access for unlimited use with a new one- or two-year customer agreement. The promotional savings is valid for new and existing customers through December 31, 2005. For more information on BroadbandAccess from Verizon Wireless, visit www.verizonwireless.com/broadbandaccess.
V CAST Verizon Wireless' V CAST service enables consumers to access short video content on-demand, including current news, weather, sports and entertainment programming. With V CAST, customers can also download and play cutting-edge 3D games, watch music videos and concert performances from favorite artists, view short programs specifically designed for mobile phones and other video content right on their phones. For a list of all videos and 3D game entertainment available on V CAST, visit www.getvcast.com. For $15.00 monthly access added to their Verizon Wireless calling plan, customers in the San Francisco Bay Area receive the V CAST VPak which includes unlimited access to a wide array of more than 300 video clips, updated daily, from leading news, sports, weather and entertainment content providers. Unlimited basic short content is included. There are no airtime charges to download, stream or watch V CAST content. Customers can also download, stream or watch premium short video content, available at additional cost, which includes music videos, select sports clips and mobisodes. Application download fees apply for 3D games, premium video short content, and all other Get It Now® applications. Verizon Wireless V CAST customers also receive monthly access and unlimited browsing on Verizon Wireless' Mobile Web 2.0SM news and information service. For a limited time, customers who sign up for V CAST receive one month of service free.
EV-DO NetworkV CAST and BroadbandAccess run on Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network, which began commercial operation in October 2003 in San Diego and Washington, D.C and is now the nation's largest and fastest wide-area wireless broadband network. Verizon Wireless' EV-DO network initially made its commercial debut with BroadbandAccess wireless Internet service for business customers and mobile professionals. The company launched its V CAST wireless broadband multimedia service in February 2005.
Verizon Wireless has invested more than $4 billion annually on the enhancement of its nation-wide network since the company's inception in 2000, and last year alone it invested $5 billion, including build-out of the wireless broadband EV-DO network. In California, Verizon Wireless invested more than $600 million in network enhancements in 2004.
V CAST and BroadbandAccess AccoladesWithin weeks of the initial launch, Verizon Wireless' V CAST service won best "Mobile/Remote Service" at the fifth annual MobileFocus Awards, which were presented at CTIA in New Orleans and sponsored by Pepcom and LAPTOP Magazine. The awards honor the best in mobile and wireless technology.
The company's BroadbandAccess wireless Internet service has received recognition as well. In May 2005, CMP Media LLC's Network Computing named Verizon Wireless as the Best Business Data Service for BroadbandAccess in the publication's 2005 Well-Connected Awards, beating out business data services of two other major wireless carriers.
LAPTOP Magazine awarded Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess service with the Editor's Choice Award in its December 2004 issue. According to the articled titled, "Be Your Own Hot Spot," BroadbandAccess is the only wide-area wireless broadband service "that lives up to the hype." Reviewers concluded, "In short, Verizon Wireless' BroadbandAccess service lives up to its name. If you live or work in one of the current coverage areas, you'll be rewarded with a high-speed connection that's perfect for those of us with little patience. Which is just about every mobile worker we know."
V CAST Phones and BroadbandAccess PC CardsCustomers can access V CAST on several hot new phones. The featured phone is the new LG VX8100 phone. With its full-motion short content, audio streaming and downloading and playback capabilities, the LG VX8100 offers customers a rich and rewarding interactive experience. The LG VX8100 is available for $99.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate with a new two-year customer agreement. V CAST customers can also check out the latest in news, entertainment and sports on the Motorola E815, which is $149.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate with a new two-year customer agreement, and on the CDM8940 from UTStarcom Personal Communications (formerly Audiovox Communications Corp.) for $99.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate with a new two-year customer agreement.
Verizon Wireless offers several PC Cards for BroadbandAccess customers, including the UTStarcom Personal Communications PC 5740, Kyocera KPC-650 and Novatel V620 cards. For a limited time, Verizon Wireless customers with unlimited use data plans can buy the BroadbandAccess UTStarcom Personal Communications PC 5740 card for $99.99 with a new two-year customer agreement, or $149.99 with a new one-year customer agreement.
For more information on V CAST or BroadbandAccess from Verizon Wireless, visit a Verizon Wireless Communications Store, call 1-800-2 JOIN IN, or go to www.verizonwireless.com. Business customers can contact a Verizon Wireless Business Sales Representative directly at 1-800-VZW-4-BIZ.
(EDITORS: Broadcast-quality B-roll footage featuring V CAST and BroadbandAccess is available online. Log on to www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia to preview and request video segments, which can be received in newsrooms digitally, by tape or via satellite.)
About Verizon WirelessAbout Verizon Wireless Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 47.4 million voice and data customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia
NOTE: This press release contains statements about expected future events and financial results that are forward-looking and subject to risks and uncertainties. For those statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The following important factors could affect future results and could cause those results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements: materially adverse changes in economic conditions in the markets served by us, an adverse change in the ratings afforded our debt securities or those of Verizon Communications by nationally accredited ratings organizations, the effects of the substantial competition that exists in our markets, which has been intensifying, and which may intensify further as a result of local number portability regulations that allow wireless customers to retain their phone numbers when switching wireless service providers, our ability to obtain sufficient financing to satisfy our substantial capital requirements, including to fund capital expenditures, debt repayment and distributions to our owners, our ability to obtain sufficient spectrum licenses, particularly in our most densely populated areas, our ability to develop future business opportunities, including wireless data services, and to continue to adapt to the changing conditions in the wireless industry, our ability to receive satisfactory service from our key vendors and suppliers, our ability to generate additional subscribers, with acceptable levels of churn, from resellers and distributors of our service, material changes in available technology, and technology substitution that could impact the popularity and usage of our technology, our continued provision of satisfactory service to our subscribers at an acceptable cost, in order to reduce churn, the impact of continued unionization efforts with respect to our employees, regulatory developments, including new regulations that could increase our cost of doing business or reduce demand for our services, developments in connection with existing or future litigation, and changes in our accounting assumptions that regulatory agencies, including the SEC, may require or that result from changes in the accounting rules or their application, which could result in an impact on earnings.####