In Short

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless carrier in the United States, with over 110 million customers. Although we often refer to "Verizon" as a carrier, it is actually a large telecommunications company that offers wired internet, phone and television service and also operates its subsidiary, Verizon Wireless, as the wireless carrier.

Verizon Wireless' network consists of a CDMA 3G network and LTE 4G network, the latter of which has offered generally comprehensive nationwide coverage for a couple of years now. Verizon was the first carrier in the U.S. to launch an LTE device, the HTC Thunderbolt, along with a handful of markets at the end of 2010. Currently the carrier has no plans to shut down its CDMA 3G network until at least 2022, when it will start to sunset some markets, with no final operation date yet set.

Although it has risen to be the largest carrier in the country, Verizon is often regarded as one of the less customer-friendly carriers while also offering some of the highest prices in the industry. Its recent move to "Share Everything" plans has every customer paying for unlimited talk and texts with every plan, with relatively expensive prices for data that can be shared across devices. Additional phones, tablets and data sticks can be added to any plan for a small monthly access fee as an incentive to get more devices on the plan and using data.

Despite the prices and policies of the carrier, there's no indication that Verizon's growth will be slowing down anytime soon — it has been the leading carrier for several years now and continues to grow.