History and Timeline

The world is 
only going forward, 
and we’re happy 
to lead the way.

Intro - History & Timeline

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How we got to where we are today
Description 

Verizon Communications was created on June 30, 2000 by Bell Atlantic Corp. and GTE Corp., in one of the largest mergers in U.S. business history. GTE and Bell Atlantic evolved and grew through decades of mergers, acquisitions and divestitures. Today, Verizon is a global technology company delivering the promise of the digital world to millions of customers every day.

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Get the inside story of Verizon’s history

Read a first-person account of Verizon’s history, from its founding to today. Verizon Untethered is the story of Verizon as told by Ivan Seidenberg, our former chairman and CEO. In the book, Ivan also shares valuable lessons and insights from his decades-long career as a visionary business leader.

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Former chairman and CEO Ivan Seidenberg with SVP-Talent & Diversity Magda Yrizarry.

Intro - History & Timeline Tool

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Explore our milestones and see how it all began
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Use the category and year filters to see how Verizon evolved into a technology leader or view our corporate history (pdf).

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December |
2010
Network Innovations
4GLTE

Verizon Wireless launches the nation’s first wide-area 4G LTE network, setting a new standard for high-speed wireless communication. Initially available in 38 major markets, the 4G LTE network covers more than 110 million people at launch.

November |
2010
New Products & Services
FlexViewMobile

Flex View, a pioneering streaming service, lets Fios TV customers watch their favorite video programming outside the home – on smartphones, tablets and laptops – even when there is no internet connection available.

May |
2010
New Products & Services
LTE in Rural America

In anticipation of its wide-area 4G rollout, Verizon introduces the LTE in Rural America Program to provide customers in smaller markets access to this high-speed network.

October |
2009
New Products & Services
Partnership with Google

The Droid by Motorola is Verizon’s first AndroidTM device and the first smartphone to feature Android 2.0. With high-speed web browsing and access to apps, it’s an instant hit with customers and industry watchers alike.

January |
2009
Mergers & Acquisitions
Acquires Alltel

Verizon completes its purchase of Alltel Wireless and becomes the largest wireless carrier in the country with a network covering more than 290 million people.

August |
2008
Mergers & Acquisitions
Acquires RuralCellular

Verizon Wireless expands its coverage to rural markets in 15 states – an area covering 4.7 million people – by purchasing Rural Cellular Corp.

April |
2008
Network Innovations
Verizon invests in nationwide wireless spectrum

Verizon is the winning bidder for $9.4 billion worth of wireless spectrum across the U.S. The additional spectrum allows Verizon to move forward with its plans to deploy a next-generation LTE network.

July |
2007
Mergers & Acquisitions
Acquires CyberTrust

With the acquisition of Cybertrust, a global information security firm, Verizon Enterprise Solutions becomes the leading provider of managed security services to business and government customers worldwide.

January |
2006
Mergers & Acquisitions
MCI Acquisition

The MCI acquisition provides Verizon with an international long-distance network and several large corporate customers. A new corporate division, Verizon Business, is created to serve medium and large businesses and government customers.

September |
2005
New Products & Services
Fios All

Harnessing the speed and reliability of Verizon’s 100% fiber-optic network, Fios TV offers customers a better alternative to cable and satellite. Fios TV features over 300 channels at launch, along with on-demand programming.

August |
2004
Network Innovations
Fios Launch

Verizon offers high-speed broadband service over its 100% fiber-optic network for the first time. This innovative technology provides customers with faster data speeds and more reliable service.

April |
2004
Corporate
Verizon Joins Dow
Verizon joins the Dow

Due to its size and industry influence, Verizon is named to the Dow Jones Industrial Average – a list of 30 public companies that serves as a key benchmark for the overall stock market.

November |
2003
Corporate
Removes Barriers

Verizon takes a leadership role in promoting Local Number Portability – a new process that allows wireless customers to keep their phone number when changing carriers.

January |
2002
Network Innovations
Verizon aunches the first 3G network
First 3G network in the US

Verizon launches the first 3G (third generation) network in the U.S. This advancement gives customers the power of high-speed wireless broadband to access the web and stream data from their mobile devices.

June |
2000
History & Heritage

Bell Atlantic merges with GTE Corp. and changes its name to Verizon Communications Inc. The $52 billion deal combines Bell Atlantic’s sophisticated network with GTE’s national footprint to create new a leader in the communications industry.

April |
2000
History & Heritage
Verizon Wireless

Bell Atlantic Corp. and Vodafone AirTouch Plc combine their U.S. wireless interests to create Verizon Wireless. With the addition of GTE’s wireless customers in the coming months, the joint venture soon becomes the nation’s largest wireless carrier.

Watch the evolution of Verizon video

At Verizon, we’ve been building and advancing digital infrastructure and solutions for decades. Building a more connected community for all is what we do best.