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Verizon's Go90 mobile video service set to launch later this month

Invitations go out to 5 million Verizon Wireless subscribers, but the company plans to eventually open the service to everyone.

Go90 is Verizon's new mobile video service. Sarah Tew/CNET

LAS VEGAS -- Verizon Wireless subscribers will get an early peek into the company's new mobile video service.

The nation's largest wireless carrier has sent 5 million of its customers an invitation to Go90, a streaming-video service unveiled Tuesday. Later this month the company plans to launch the service to all customers, regardless of their carrier, Marni Walden, head of new businesses and innovation, said Thursday in her keynote address at the CTIA Super Mobility industry trade show here.

Go90 is the latest move by a major company to get into the world of so-called "over the top" video, or content delivered over an Internet connection and not by way of a traditional cable TV service. For Verizon, Go90 represents a rare instance in which it's opening up a service to everyone, and not just its own customers as an exclusive product. For consumers, this means more access to video on the device they spend the most time with, their smartphone.

Go90 is a free, ad-based streaming-video service that you can access only on a mobile phone and that will focus on short clips, viral videos and a social element, with crowd-sourced recommendations and the ability to join groups.

Verizon said Tuesday that it planned to send invitations to those identified as part of its target generation: young people known as millennials, generally considered to be around 30 years old or younger.