Verizon turns on 5G in Los Angeles as city count hits 19

Verizon is slowly inching closer to its promise of 5G in more than 30 cities in 2019.

Eli Blumenthal Senior Editor
Eli Blumenthal is a senior editor at CNET with a particular focus on covering the latest in the ever-changing worlds of telecom, streaming and sports. He previously worked as a technology reporter at USA Today.
Expertise 5G, mobile networks, wireless carriers, phones, tablets, streaming devices, streaming platforms, mobile and console gaming,
Eli Blumenthal
2 min read

Verizon 5G is now live in LA. We tested it in Chicago earlier this year.

Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

Verizon promised to have 5G live in 30 cities in 2019, and with just over two weeks left on the calendar, it's inching closer to that goal. On Monday the carrier announced that it has turned on its 5G network in parts of Los Angeles, marking the 19th city to get its new network. 

Verizon says the new service will be "available in parts of Downtown, Chinatown, Del Rey and Venice" and around landmarks such as "Grand Park, Los Angeles Convention Center, Union Station, LA Live, Staples Center and Venice Beach Boardwalk." There are currently no maps for exactly where the service will be, but the carrier promises to release them on Friday. 

Those interested in using 5G will need to make sure they have a compatible 5G device, such as the Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G, as well as a recent Verizon unlimited plan that supports 5G.

Watch this: We tested Verizon's new 5G network

Sprint , T-Mobile and AT&T all previously turned on 5G in at least some parts of LA, with T-Mobile and AT&T using a millimeter-wave 5G network that is similar to Verizon and Sprint using its midband spectrum. T-Mobile and AT&T recently expanded their 5G coverage in the area with the launch of their respective low-band 5G networks.

Low-band is much slower than the speedy millimeter-wave technology, but it does offer significantly better coverage and can work indoors, two things that millimeter-wave has trouble with. Midband is the third flavor of 5G, offering better speeds than low-band with much more coverage than millimeter-wave, but thus far only Sprint has made use of it. 

Verizon had previously announced 10 additional cities that will be getting 5G in 2019: Charlotte, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Des Moines, Little Rock, Kansas City, Memphis, San Diego and Salt Lake City. No exact dates, however, have been given for when those networks will come online or where the 30th 5G city will be.

What 5G can do for you besides fast phone downloads

See all photos