How Verizon's reorganization puts a focus on 5G
- Verizon announced this week it will reorganize its business segments into three customer-based units: Consumer, Business and Verizon Media Group/Oath. CEO Hans Vestberg said in a statement that the move would "optimize the growth opportunities we see as leaders in the 5G era."
- The reorganization marks a departure from the previous structure, which divided wireless and wired services into separate units.
- In an interview with Reuters, Vestberg said "content is going to be important for 5G," and that effort would come under the Oath business segment, which also includes media and advertising. It will be headed by Oath CEO Guru Gowrappan.
The business move comes as Verizon tries to position itself as an industry leader in 5G. Since the new technology straddles the line between wireless for mobile deployment and wired connections for residential broadband, keeping the two functions separate could have caused problems for the company. As Light Reading points out, operators are already combining fixed and mobile operations, and Verizon’s realignment "could support a similar focus on ‘convergence’ in [the] future."
The division between consumers, businesses and media will also help the telecom highlight the myriad applications of 5G. Beyond offering faster download speeds, the network will support technology from autonomous and connected vehicles to smart grids to health care infrastructure. Verizon recently completed a test of a 5G signal beamed to a moving receiver, a significant step that shows the mobile potential of the network.
Verizon has launched 5G Home in parts of Los Angeles, Houston, Indianapolis and Sacramento, CA, and announced last week that it would also make Panama City, FL one of its initial rollout cities as Verizon helps rebuild the area’s broadband infrastructure after the damage of Hurricane Michael. In an interview with Smart Cities Dive earlier this year, Sean Harrington, Verizon's Vice President for City Solutions, said the company is "pushing the entire ecosystem forward" as it competes with other carriers to get 5G off the ground.
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