In its race to shut down its CDMA network by 2020, Verizon has successfully replaced most of its 1x and EV-DO spectrum in the United States’s most densely populated market, New York City.
Milan Milanovic of BTIG Research wrote in a blog post that the carrier has fully turned the last 10MHz CDMA block of the 1900MHz PCS band to LTE in the city — the conversion came up earlier than some on the street have expected. The company is looking to transition its 850MHz band within 2018.
Analysts have been looking worriedly at Verizon’s relatively limited portfolio of spectrum as the company’s LTE speeds have gone down in the competition for unlimited data plans — a fact that T-Mobile will gloat about.
The company insists, though, that it has plenty to work with on the 700MHz, 1700MHz and 2100MHz pieces it has acquired over the course of this decade and has been working on incorporating band efficiency technologies. It didn’t pick up any 600MHz spectrum in a recent FCC auction.
AT&T has already shut off its 2G network while T-Mobile and Sprint don’t have firm commitments for transition.