Verizon launches 4G LTE in 26 new markets, roughly 160 million Americans now have coverage

Verizon Wireless has just issued a press release saying they’ve launched their delectable highspeed 4G LTE network in 26 new markets; see the full list below. That brings the total coverage map to 143 markets, which covers roughly 160 million Americans. During the summer the folks at PC Mag ran speed tests in 21 major cities to see who has the fastest wireless network, and Verizon won by a landslade. The second fastest network, T-Mobile, which uses 42 Mbps HSPA+, scored an average of 3.7 megabits per second down and 1 megabit per second up. Verizon on the other hand pushed 9.46 megabits per second down (with peaks hitting over 35 megabits per second!) and 1.35 megabits per second up.

Starting Thursday, Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network will be available in Fort Smith and Jonesboro, Ark.; San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, Calif.; Daytona, Fla.; Bloomington, Champaign/Urbana, Rockford and Springfield, Ill.; the Quad Cities, Ill./Iowa; Iowa City, Iowa; Shreveport, La.; Kalamazoo and Saginaw, Mich.; Reno, Nev.; Las Cruces, N.M.; Fargo, N.D.; Canton, Lima and Mansfield, Ohio; Dyersburg, Tenn.; the Tri-Cities, Tenn./Va.; and Austin, Beaumont/Port Arthur, Wichita Falls and El Paso, Texas. The company is also making major 4G LTE expansions on Thursday in San Francisco, Indianapolis and Cleveland/Akron.

That speed comes at a price however. Verizon charges $30 per month for 2 GB, $50 per month for 5 GB, or $80 per month for 10 GB. Each GB after that will run you $10. If you’re the penny pinching type, your best bet is to go with Sprint, one of the last of the remaining operators to offer a true unlimited plan, with no throttling. Now T-Mobile has slightly cheaper pricing, with the plans being bundled with their voice and minute packages, but where they win our hearts is their complete lack of overage fees. Once you use up your data bucket, you’ll be throttled down to 2G speeds until the end of your billing cycle.

Frankly, that’s better than forking over an arm and a leg.

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