Verizon came out with more details on its mobile 5G service for the Above and Beyond Unlimited plans (different than the 5G home internet service), tied to the pending release of the Samsung S10 5G smartphone and the news is very promising.
Mobile 5G service will include:
- unlimited high-speed 5G data
- unlimited 5G mobile hotspot/tethering
- unlimited 4K streaming over the 5G network.
5G data is download-only - all upstream data (sent from your device to the network) when connected to 5G will be over Verizon's 4G LTE network, but Verizon promises that data will not count toward any 4G LTE data usage.
When Verizon first launched its 5G service, we had a lot of questions about plan restrictions, but these new details show there are currently no data restrictions on mobile 5G plans, even including network management.
Additionally, 5G service is only $10/month extra on top of Verizon's eligible 4G unlimited plans, but even that access fee is currently being waived in a new limited promotion.
This is one of the few "unlimited" plans worthy of the name - so what are the downsides? Well, there are a few:
- Limited 5G availability - service is currently only in small parts of two cities (Chicago and Minneapolis) with service in 20 more cities promised by the end of the year. In short, the 5G coverage map will be very small through at least the end of 2019 and well into 2020.
- To get mobile 5G service requires purchasing a new 5G phone and there are only two options:
- The 5G Moto Mod, which is an add-on device for the Motorola Moto z3 smartphone.
- The Samsung S10 5G, which is available on May 16th, 2019 but is available for preorder now.
- Limited Companion Plan Selection - 5G is currently only available as an add-on to a Beyond or Above Unlimited smartphone plan. At this time, there is no word if Verizon will have a 5G option for legacy plans.
So for the vast majority of potential customers, the 5G plan is not a useful option right now and is certainly not a good choice for nomads. Verizon is trying to grow its 5G presence and compete in terms of bragging rights with the other carriers and offering cheap (or free), unlimited 5g data to early adopters is one way to do that.
We don't know what will happen with Verizon's 5G plans when 5G becomes more mainstream and begins to command real market power - Verizon may scale back the meaning of "unlimited" and increase prices, but that is still a long ways off.
For a lot more about upcoming 5G technologies, see our in-depth guide:
And all our recent 5G posts:
- T-Mobile / Sprint Merger Back On Track With FCC Greenlight Posted on: May 20, 2019
- Verizon 5G Plans Come With Unlimited Data, Tethering and 4K Streaming Posted on: May 2, 2019
- Verizon 5G Service Launches Early - 700Mbps Speed Tests Reported Posted on: April 4, 2019
- Verizon Mobile 5G Service Launching April 11th - In Just Two Cities Posted on: March 13, 2019
- 5G Getting Practical: Qualcomm Announces Second Generation X55 5G Modem Chipset Posted on: February 19, 2019
- 2018 Mobile Internet Year in Review & Looking Forward Into 2019 Posted on: December 31, 2018
- AT&T to "Upgrade" Millions of 4G/LTE Phones to Pretend They Are 5G Posted on: December 21, 2018
- AT&T Launches Extremely Underwhelming Mobile 5G Plan in 12 Cities Posted on: December 18, 2018
- Carriers Preview Upcoming Mobile 5G Technology & Devices Posted on: December 5, 2018
- AT&T Teases World's First Mobile 5G Device - Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot Coming Soon Posted on: October 29, 2018