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Verizon Wireless CDMA2000 1X Evolution, United States of America

Key Data

Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon Communications and Vodafone Group, launched the USA's first commercial CDMA2000 network averaging speeds of between 40kbps and 60kbps under the brand name Express Network, initially available to about 20% of Verizon Wireless customers, in January 2002. At the time of the commercial launch of CDMA2000, Verizon Wireless had more than 29 million subscribers in the USA. In 2007 the company has 49.4 million customers and is rapidly closing the gap with Cingular who occupy the lead market position in the US.


Nortel Networks is to expand the current network and upgrade equipment following an agreement believed to be worth $1bn. The agreement affects several key markets including San Diego, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Detroit, Atlanta and Cleveland and will include expansions and upgrades of CDMA2000 1X radio base stations, switching, Passport* Internet Protocol (IP) platforms.

In December 2006 Nortel Networks was again contracted by Verizon Wireless to upgrade its CDMA network in a five-year agreement worth $2bn. Under the agreement, Nortel will supply additional radio base stations, switching, IP platforms and optical networking products. The agreement builds on a contract announced in July 2006, whereby Nortel was selected to supply Verizon with CDMA 1xEV-DO Revision A technology.


The network expansions come as adoption of services to utilise broadband networks – such as the company’s V CAST video and music services, broadband access, high-speed Internet and e-mail offering – have been gaining market share. This agreement presents an opportunity for Verizon and Nortel to develop and deploy next-generation IMS-based applications and services.


Verizon Wireless began offering advanced wireless services through the Express Network including internet and intranet access and email at average speeds of between 40kbps and 60kbps with a potential top speed of 144kbps. Shortly after the launch, the CDMA2000 network covered about 20% of its networks including the coverage areas from Boston to Virginia as well as Silicon Valley, Salt Lake City and San Francisco in the West.

Initially, Verizon offered business customers to be charged for the amount of data up and downloaded, rather than network usage per minute. The first devices announced for usage with the Express Network were Sierra Wireless' AirCard for personal computers and the Kyocera 2235 telephone.


"The network expansions come as adoption of services to utilise broadband networks have been gaining market share."

In March 2001, Verizon Wireless and Lucent Technologies announced a three-year agreement to double the voice capacity and increase data transmission speeds for Verizon's wireless networks for an estimated contract value of around $5bn.

The agreement included the provision of Lucent Flexent family Mobile Switching Centers (MSC) and base stations. Furthermore, the order includes Softswitch-based access systems for Internet Protocol (IP) and Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) network applications.

CommWorks was chosen for the delivery of core data network infrastructure to enable wireless data access and interaction in CDMA networks.


Verizon Wireless announced in January 2002 that it chose Ericsson to supply CDMA2000 Authentication, Authorisation and Accounting (AAA) solution for the CDMA2000 'Express Network'.

The system will now provide carrier class, geographical redundancy between the East and West coasts of Verizon Wireless' nationwide US network. The AAA system will provide integrated policy management and profile definition and hence represents an opportunity for Verizon Wireless to offer customised service packages for different target segments, including high-speed internet and intranet access, email and high bandwidth file transfers.


In March 2003, Verizon Wireless announced plans for a CDMA2000 1xEV-DO network for commercial launch in San Diego for business users around summer 2003 with Nortel Networks as radio equipment supplier. Earlier that year, the partners completed technical 1xEV-DO trials in San Diego achieving speeds of around 2.4Mbps. The network is powered by Nortel Networks Univity CDMA core and access technology.

Verizon Wireless' packet data system offers capabilities for remote access to corporate intranets and databases, corporate email with attachments, large file transfers and video and audio streaming.

Nortel Networks 1xEV-DO solution includes Univity CDMA Metro Cell radio base stations, 1xEV-DO, Univity Radio Network Controller and Element Management System and related infrastructure. Verizon now has EV-DO service in 50 metropolitan markets and Nortel has once again been contracted to update the EV-DO system to revision A.


Verizon Wireless is a joint venture between Verizon Communications and UK based Vodafone Group Plc. Lucent was chosen as the largest supplier of MSC equipment and access systems as well as radio network equipment. Ericsson supplied its AAA solution. At the time of the CDMA2000 network launch, Verizon Wireless partnered with Accenture to offer mobile enterprise applications using the Accenture Mobile Service Bureau. CommWorks is core data network infrastructure supplier.

Verizon Wireless later entered into an agreement with Nortel Networks as radio equipment supplier for its 1xEV-DO network to be deployed in the San Diego area around mid-2003. Nortel Networks is a major supplier and contractor for Verizon Wireless, having been awarded two more important contracts in July and December 2006, respectively.