In its third-quarter revenue results this morning, Verizon Wireless reports that its 4G LTE service now covers 250 million people in 419 markets.

Verizon competitor AT&T currently covers 72 cities and only plans to reach 100 markets by the end of the year. Clearly, Verizon’s almost year-long headstart on building its LTE network is paying off.

In particular, it may be leading iPhone 5 owners to choose Verizon over AT&T as they compare LTE networks, as Verizon also reports it saw the highest jump in contract customers (1.5 million) in the past four years this quarter. Verizon now has almost 96 million wireless subscribers.

Verizon reported 29 billion in operating revenue in Q3, which was helped by a 7.5 percent jump in wireless service revenues totaling $16.2 billion. Not surprisingly, it points to its strong LTE network advantage, as well as its new Share Everything plans, as a reason for the wireless growth.

Photo: Eric Hauser/Flickr

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