Verizon C-Band
auction results
and impact
to customers

Frequently asked questions

  • Introduction

  • Our vision is clear: We have the best multipurpose networks architected at scale by the best engineers on the planet. This gives us the strategic foundation needed to maximize growth and be positioned to realize the best return on investment in the fully networked economy.

    Verizon was the first to launch a 5G mobile network, and since then we have deployed millimeter-wave (mmWave)-based 5G Ultra Wideband service in parts of more than 80 cities. Plus, we’ve deployed multi-access edge compute in strategic locations across the domestic U.S.

    We intend to improve our strong position by accelerating our deployment of C-Band spectrum, which is why in March 2021 we invested $52.9 billion on new C-Band spectrum.1 Combining C-Band spectrum with our mmWave holdings will help us deploy a more powerful 5G experience and expand our strong 5G network—helping to accelerate the pace of innovation for our own company and for your agency. That’s what we mean when we say 5G built right.

    View fact sheet
  • Here are the top five C-Band questions we’re hearing from our customers:

  • 1. What is C-Band spectrum?

    C-Band is referred to as “mid-band” spectrum because at > 1 GHz to < 7 GHz, it sits between low-band spectrum like Verizon’s 700 MHz and high-band spectrum like our mmWave 28 GHz and 39 GHz. Learn more.

  • 2. What did Verizon acquire as part of the auction?

    We doubled our existing mid-band spectrum holdings by adding an average of 161 MHz of C-Band nationwide.

    We won between 140 and 200 MHz of C-Band spectrum in every available market. Specifically, our acquisitions included:

    • Securing a minimum 140 MHz of total spectrum in the contiguous United States and an average of 161 MHz nationwide; that’s bandwidth in every available market, 406 markets in all.
    • Securing a consistent 60 MHz of early clearing spectrum in the initial 46 markets—this is the swath of spectrum targeted for clearing by the end of 2021, home to more than half of the U.S. population.
    • Securing up to 200 MHz in 158 mostly rural markets covering nearly 40 million people. This will further enhance Verizon’s broadband solution portfolio for rural America.

    The auction results represent a 120% increase in Verizon’s spectrum holdings in sub-6 GHz bands. The quality of this spectrum and our depth of licensed holdings represent the premier asset in the industry. The spectrum bands we won are contiguous, which will streamline deployment of this spectrum across the mainland United States.1 For our customers, this means we’ll be able to significantly increase the footprint of 5G Ultra Wideband, bringing its transformative speed, capacity and low latency to more places than ever before.

    5G Ultra Wideband available in select areas.

  • 3. When will C-Band spectrum be deployed?

    The C-Band spectrum licensed in this auction is currently being used, so current tenants of the spectrum will need to clear the spectrum before it can be reallocated for use with wireless technology. We expect the first wave of that spectrum to be cleared by the end of this year.

    In the next 12 months, we expect to have incremental 5G bandwidth available to 100 million people in the initial 46 markets, delivering 5G Ultra Wideband on C-Band spectrum. Over 2022 and 2023, coverage is expected to increase to more than 175 million people in the 46 markets. By 2024 and beyond, when the remaining C-Band is cleared, more than 250 million people are expected to have access to Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband service on C-Band spectrum.1

  • 4. Can all devices access C-Band spectrum?

    More than 70% of the 5G devices in the hands of customers today are C-Band compatible. The iPhone 12 model and most Samsung Galaxy S21 5G or later devices will support C-band through a software upgrade. Going forward, all new 5G handsets Verizon brings to market to postpaid customers will be C-Band compatible, with more than 20 C-Band- compatible devices offered by the end of the year.1

  • 5. Why partner with Verizon for 5G?

    Verizon is your ideal partner for 5G with the coverage of 5G Nationwide and the outstanding performance of 5G Ultra Wideband in parts of more than 80 cities. With Verizon 5G, agencies have even more opportunities to transform—from enhanced situational awareness to better constituent experiences.

    Verizon 5G is built right with extensive investment in fiber; spectrum holdings now including mmWave, C-Band and low band; small-cell deployment; and edge computing resources. These elements lay the foundation for a truly transformative 5G experience, opening up innovative opportunities for your organization.

  • Learn more.

    To learn more about how Verizon can help support your organization, call 844.899.0685.


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