When Is 5G Coming to the US? (Updated for 2018)

5G isn't yet widely available, but it's coming!

Picture of the United States at night
Photo by NASA on Unsplash

5G will provide an infrastructure that supports faster mobile connections so that you can stream smoother movies, upload videos quicker, and connect more of your devices to the internet with less delays.

However, 5G service isn’t available just yet, and release dates are different for every carrier. With that being said, there's been talk that the United States government will nationalize 5G which might mean that they implement it themselves, a project that could drastically affect the release date of 5G in the US.

Not in the US? See 5G Availability Around the World for release dates in other countries like Japan and China.

Verizon’s 5G Service

Verizon currently offers 5G broadband internet in areas of Houston TX, Sacramento CA, Indianapolis IN, and Los Angeles CA. Pre-orders for Verizon 5G Home started on September 13, 2018, and service began October 1.

Anyone who purchases Verizon 5G Home through that link above will be a First On 5G member, which will get them free 5G service for three months. After the first three months, Verizon Wireless customers with a qualifying plan pay $50 /month for their home 5G service, and non-members pay $70 /month (these are not annual contracts).

Verizon 5G Home customers have no data caps and can expect speeds ranging from 300 Mbps to up to 1 Gbps, depending on location.

Anyone who receives Verizon's 5G service will also get YouTube TV free for the first three months and a free Apple TV 4K or Google Chromecast Ultra. A few other perks include a free router and free router upgrades when they become available in 2019, and priority when purchasing 5G mobile devices from Verizon (when they become available).

Verizon 5G Home is internet for your home. Verizon does not currently offer a mobile 5G service.

The cities mentioned above that qualify for Verizon 5G Home were some of the first areas where the company began testing 5G, so they might provide 5G in other test locations soon, including Atlanta, Brockton, Dallas, Bernardsville, Denver, Ann Arbor, Seattle, Miami, and Washington, DC.

It’s also possible that other larger cities like New York City and Chicago will have access to Verizon’s 5G service in early 2019.

You can stay current with Verizon’s plans to release 5G on their 5G Technology page.

AT&T’s 5G Service

AT&T conducted 5G trials in Austin TX, Waco TX, Kalamazoo MI, and South Bend IN in 2017, and plans to launch mobile 5G across several cities in 2018 and 2019.

Some of the cities identified by AT&T for the 2018 launch include Houston TX, Dallas TX, Atlanta TX, Waco TX, Charlotte NC, Raleigh NC, Oklahoma City OK, Jacksonville FL, Louisville, KY, New Orleans LA, Indianapolis IN, and San Antonio TX.

AT&T has also launched 5G Evolution in dozens of markets in 2018, which is the groundwork before deploying full-blown 5G. AT&T plans to end the year with 5G Evolution in over 400 markets.

In early 2019, AT&T's 5G service will begin rolling out in parts of the following cities: Las Vegas NV, Los Angeles CA, Nashville TN, Orlando FL, San Diego CA, San Francisco CA, and San Jose CA.

T-Mobile's 5G Service

T-Mobile is rolling out mobile 5G to 30 cities in 2018, a few of which include Los Angeles CA, New York NY, Las Vegas NV, and Dallas TX. T-Mobile is also committing to bringing their Metro prepaid service into the 5G space in 2019.

T-Mobile's full nationwide 5G coverage won't be around until 2020.

However, Sprint and T-Mobile are looking into merging into one company, which if successfully, might mean that the company could offer in-home 5G services, too. According to an FCC filing, by 2024, "The combined company will be able to offer this service to over 52 percent of zip codes across the county."

Sprint's 5G Service

Sprint plans to provide mobile 5G service to several cities starting in the first half of 2019. These include New York City, Phoenix, Kansas City, Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC.

Charter's 5G Service

Although Charter (Spectrum) currently does not have a wireless offering, CEO Tom Rutledge says that they plan to launch one in 2018. We can assume that this will be a 5G service given that they're testing 5G wireless in Orlando FL, Reno NV, Clarksville TN, Columbus OH, Bakersfield CA, and Grand Rapids MI.