Verizon Will Expand EV-DO Nationwide
By Eric Lin, Fri Jan 09 00:30:00 GMT 2004
Today Verizon Wireless announced that they would expand their EV-DO high speed data service from the two trial cities to complete nationwide coverage over the next two years.
1x EV-DO is the next step in the CDMA 2000 data timeline. It should be three to four times fast than 1x RTT, with throughput speeds ranging from 300-500k. Verizon will invest USD 1 billion over the next two years in order to bring 1x EV-DO to their entire nationwide network. Two years is a long way off for some, especially in the fast paced world of wireless, but CNet reports that EV-DO should be available in many US cities this summer.
For those concerned that two years is long time to build out a wireless infrastructure when standards obsolesce so quickly, Qualcomm's CDMA 2000 roadmap actually ends with 1x EV-DO (and EV-DV) thus far. And at speeds that match or exceed WCDMA, Verizon has very little to worry about as of yet- except for price. So far Verizon has every intention of maintaining its $80 all you can eat plan. In order for Verizon to get the most out of this investment, they'll probably have to lower that price to something more competitive with Wi-Fi or even DSL prices.
Currently the only way to take advantage of the EV-DO network is with a data card, but not for long. Yesterday Audiovox announced an EV-DO capable Pocket PC phone called the 5050. The design is similar to the first generation GSM Pocket PC phones carried by O2, T-Mobile and ATT, which is no surprise since both units are manufactured by HTC. The Audiovox 5050 has 64 MB of RAM, and SD slot and runs PPC 2003. Neither Audiovox nor Verizon have announced a release date or price yet.