On April 4, Verizon became the first company in the world to launch a 5G mobile network when it officially turned on its 5G Ultra Wideband network in select areas of Minneapolis and Chicago.
Verizon’s 5G technology delivers advanced network capabilities to consumers and businesses in near real-time. While select areas of Chicago and Minneapolis were the first to experience Verizon’s 5G mobility service, Verizon has announced plans to launch its 5G service in more than 20 U.S. cities in 2019.
This news is a significant milestone for Verizon customers. Not only can customers now experience higher bandwidth and lower latency, but 5G technology is helping to usher in the Fourth Industrial Revolution and supporting the startups bringing it to life.
According to Ronan Dunne, executive vice president and group CEO of Verizon Consumer Group, “By 2035, 5G will enable $12.3 trillion of global economic outputs and support 22 million jobs worldwide. Much of that growth will come from the digitization of transportation, agriculture, manufacturing and other physical industries.”
At Verizon Ventures, we look for technologies and products with the ability to integrate with our strategic mission to pioneer 5G technology. Verizon’s leadership in the 5G race provides a unique edge for our entrepreneurs; the company’s Chairman and CEO Hans Vestberg has identified eight currencies within 5G that aim to provide significant improvements over existing mobile networks.
Our current portfolio companies are already thinking ahead to how the implementation of 5G will help their core business expand. As they begin to execute these ideas, Verizon will be an educated partner in determining how to best leverage 5G for their own implementation, putting their technology ahead of the competition.
Additionally, being the first to market for any product comes with a valuable set of lessons learned. Here are a few learnings we believe all entrepreneurs should follow as they build and launch their ideas:
- Be brave and pave your own way. Being the first to do or create anything classifies you as a trailblazer. This often means you will be navigating your journey without a set guide book - no pre-existing business plan and business leaders to follow. While this may be an unknown journey, if you have the market statistics, technology, and drive to pave your way, go for it!
- Create a strong network of team members. Build your team with a select and strategic group of entrepreneurs. Ensure you create a balanced skill set to address the fundamental needs based on the stage of your product.
- Always continue to optimize. No product or technology is ever “completed” as there is always room for growth. Reflect on your weaknesses and continue to optimize your product to provide more efficiency, better customer service, etc. We will continue to optimize our 5G network in the same manner we did our 4G network.
We’re excited to be the first to enable 5G Ultra Wideband Network in select areas and see how the network unlocks new potential. This is just the beginning of 5G innovation for Verizon customers and Verizon Ventures entrepreneurs.