PSA: Verizon wont activate the Nexus 7 LTE on their network until it has been “certified”

Nexus 7 4G LTE Google Play

With the Nexus 7 (2013) LTE finally hitting the Google Play Store last week, many excited buyers assumed that, because it was listed as such, the device would work without a hitch on Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network. Sure enough, it does. Pop in an already activated Verizon LTE SIM, and the world of the internet is at your fingertips. There’s just one small problem. When it comes to activating the device specifically on Verizon… they ain’t having it.

This “development” made its way across the blogs after one unhappy Nexus 7 (2013) LTE user — who couldn’t get Verizon to activate the tab — began chatting it up with Verizon Support on Twitter. According to @VZWSupport, “not all LTE tablets are created equal.” Verizon Support went onto say that unfortunately, the Nexus 7 LTE “can not be activated” referring said user to Verizon’s product listings page online. You know, officially supported devices.

VZW Support Nexus 7 LTE

Again, just because Verizon refuses to activate the Nexus 7, that’s not to say the device wont work on their network. You just have to get creative. According to some reports, a few users have had success simply taking a SIM card from an iPad and popping it into their Nexus 7. Easy peasy. While it’s easy to get upset over the issue, keep in mind that the tablet doesn’t fully support Verizon’s network, only their LTE bands and not their 3G ones.

A more serious concern with Verizon’s refusal to allow users access to their 4G LTE network stems from a deal they made with the FCC back in 2008. According to the agreement, Verizon promised to grant any device “open access” to their 700MHz spectrum. Google was quick to point this out in a letter sent to FCC saying:

“The Commission must ensure that Verizon understands that this license obligation means what it says: Any Apps, Any Devices.”

Verizon issued an email response to Android Central, simply stating that the Nexus 7 is “not yet 4G LTE certified,” and that they’ll be updating everyone once it finally is. In the meantime, any new Nexus 7 LTE buyers experiencing any resistance when trying to activate your devices on Verizon?

[Twitter | Google+]

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  • lynyrd65

    FCC, go scorched earth.

    Put those bastard greedy sleezballs in their place!

    • jak_341

      Yeah cause that is exactly what we need. More government regulation. No thanks.

      • bmg314

        When it comes to the carriers in the US, yes.

        • ari_free

          OK but then don’t complain when they censor what’s carried on them. I think FCC should stick to dealing with wardrobe malfunctions during the Superbowl and leave the rest of the internet alone.

          • bmg314

            Sorry, but I think that’s a little bit conspiracy theory thinking… Not everything the government does is Big Brother.

            Besides, the carriers need to be reigned in, pure and simple.

            Just my opinion.

          • ari_free

            Let the carriers be reigned in by consumers. I’m not on Verizon and I don’t have any of these problems.

          • Robbie Gerling

            I’m no longer on verizon for this very reason. I pay $17ish dollars a month (absolute total) on T-Mobile prepaid with a Nexus 4 and I’m very much looking forward to some Nexus 5 action here in the not too distant future. I even let go of some crazy mad discounts and perks on my verizon plan in spite of all their controlling bullshit => $72 a month total with corporate discount/unlimited data/text and 450 minutes. find that on either AT&T or verizon nowadays…

          • addicuss

            I mean that’s great. I could do the same, but you know… I actually want to be able to call people. and for that verizon is the only option.

          • h4rr4r

            Do you live in the woods? Where in the USA is only VZW an option for calls? For data you would have a much larger area where VZW has a coverage advantage but Voice on most carriers works in the vast majority of our country. I think you are simply ill informed.

          • addicuss

            I live in harrisonburg va, but I visit areas around me including WV. And trust me there are places where only verizon exists for calling. data wise there are places where only verizon exists pretty much all over the place. or at least places where only 2g is available from other carriers. Trust me I’m month to month and I look almost every month for a way to leave verizon and it’s just not feasible if I expect to get any data use in most places, or voice in very few places. I’d wager I’m better informed about where I live than you are.. but just a hunch maybe you live in Timberville.

          • addicuss

            This isnt possible in areas where verizon has a monopoly. This is the same reason wired telephony needed regulations in it’s heyday and that proved to be a boon to customers. FCC took too much of a hands off approach with wireless and the internet in my opinion.

          • Canon User

            ari, you’re really missing the point on this one man. Verizon is violating the agreement they made with the government when they acquired the spectrum. This isn’t about more government, it’s about the government enforcing the already in place rules, and in this case, entirely in favor of its citizens no matter how you look at it.

          • dhinged

            Verizon’s more Big Brother than the government!

          • ari_free

            So don’t use Verizon!

          • dhinged

            What does the government censor more of than Google? Google censors their search results more than the government censors the internet. Do you really want to see child porn and snuff videos?

          • ari_free

            I don’t want to see a lot of stuff on the internet. I have no problem with Google but if Google goes too far, I know there are other options. But if the government goes too far, that’s it.

            http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/11/russia-surveillance/all/

          • Go Hawkeyes

            The FCC needs to do just the opposite. Don’t like nipples on TV? Change the channel.

          • BulletTooth_Tony

            Yes. Let’s have them leave the internet alone… so the ISPs can institute usage caps to increase their profit margins. Brilliant comment.

      • dhinged

        They don’t need to add regulations, Verizon already agreed and are now scampering back on it.

      • addicuss

        You realize lack of regulations/ shoddy enforcement of regulations is why this is even happening right? I know its politically hip to say down with government and all, but if you think once regulations are gone verizon will suddenly decide to be 100% customer friendly you’re out of your mind.

        Not all government regulation is bad, and not all government regulation is good. Don’t take a baby out with the bathwater approach

      • BulletTooth_Tony

        Exactly correct. What we need is more government regulation. Because this lassez faire garbage isn’t working. It’s time for clear concise goals from the FCC with collaboration with other nations for the future of air spectrum resources, and enforcing rules lessees agreed to upon their winning at the auction.

    • Defenestratus

      Personally the government can go stuff themselves more.

      I’m just going to take my business to a company that actually wants my money.

  • joejoe5709

    Thats… not good for any Verizon Nexus5 dreams we may have left…

    • Squeak

      This being compatible with Verizon’s network had me excited about them and Google making amends, but it looks like it was for no reason. Verizon really sucks, especially to be the company that got exclusive launches for 3 of the most exciting Android devices, all of which had unlocked boot loaders, and were the platforms on which 3 of the most evolutionary versions of android were launched on: the OG Droid and android 2.0, the Xoom and android 3.0, and the Galaxy Nexus with android 4.0

      • joejoe5709

        True story. Of all the carriers, you’d think Verizon would be interested in catering to enthusiasts.

  • DavidVarghese

    Verizon seems to hate everything Google… I don’t blame Google for stiffing Verizon of the Nexus 4 and rumored Nexus 5.

    • PolarBear

      Google must create their own carrier( it have to be GSM) and destroy Verizon’s coverage. Google have to put Verizon on its place.

      • DavidVarghese

        I don’t think Google can do that. Anti-trust laws, remember? Google is too big to pull off that sort of thing, especially now since they got into the internet/cable provider business.

        • phatmanXXL [16,000+ posts]

          Make a sister company Gmobile

          • DavidVarghese

            Sounds legit.

          • PolarBear

            Or buy T-mobile and play similar strategy as the one they are doing with Motorola Mobility.

          • tomn1ce

            and while they are it, buy some of the 10,000 towers that at&t is selling and strengthen the network as well.

        • mcl630

          There would only be an anti-trust issue if they blocked non-Google or perhaps non-Android devices. If they allowed any compatible device, and didn’t do anything silly with pricing for service for non-Android devices, there shouldn’t be any anti-trust issues. Also, consider that nowadays, the gov’t very, very rarely acts on anti-trust claims.

    • Scott Tompkins

      I think they hate anything they can’t slap their logo on and load up with bloatware… remember the first and only Verizon “Nexus” device?

      • DavidVarghese

        They also hate when they can’t control the updates…
        Lack of updates/very slow updates = More profit for Verizon fro users buying a new phone and new contract.

        • WickedToby741

          “Edge up to a new device when we kill updates for your current one 3 months in.”

  • DanWazz

    PSA: I will never activate another device on Verizon’s network.

  • ThomasMoneyhon

    http://www.fcc.gov/complaints
    go there and in your complaint specifically call out this phandroid URL.

  • Alu Zeros

    I think it’s time Google just buys out Tmobile and creates their own carrier service like Google Fiber

  • cyanogenuser84

    I will be thinking very hard when my contract with these A-holes is up.

  • tomk

    You are complaining about government regulation of a private company that has been awarded sole ownership of a portion of the public airwaves? Really?

    • dhinged

      You don’t understand; in Europe, the people have the choice to get the phone they want on the carrier they want. Why? Because their governments care more about the people than they do the corporations. Do you really want the government to butt out and let a bunch of competing, profit-mongering corporations tell you what your choices are?

      • ari_free

        If they are competing and they don’t give the consumers what they want, they will fail just like Microsoft is in the mobile market. Apple and google didn’t need a government breakup of Microsoft in order to succeed.

        In Europe there is no CDMA choice to begin with.

        • aiden9

          You’re talking apples and oranges. Becoming a wireless carrier has seriously high barriers of entry, especially with the limited availability of spectrum. It might as well be considered impossible to do as Dish Network has come to find out after being shut out several times in their attempts to break into the market.

          I can’t even think of a good enough analogy to compare entering the wireless market with its that dang high of a barrier.

  • Chris Cosgrove

    Verizon can eat a d**k

  • Jay

    LMAO Verizon = massive troll

  • rambocombo

    Long live att!!! verizon sucks gsm rules. I needed an lte tablet but wanted a 10 inch form factor with no att bloatware i.e the samsung galaxy tab or htc jetstream so I ordered the asus transformer pad tf300l from ebay for 320 brand new went to see my business rep at att she gave me a sim and it works amazing. I normally get between 20-30 down here in la. Thinking abiut upgrading to the xperia tablet z. Sony just released a model with att lte/hspa bands. Love att and tmobile for thier gsm goodness. Verizon sucks!

    • WickedToby741

      I’m with you man. I used to be a hardcore AT&T hater, but this GoPhone service I established 3 weeks ago with the Nexus 4 I picked up has been great. Loving it so far. The speeds and coverage are good and the price is cheap. Not missing Verizon right now.

  • Brian Menius

    Vuck Ferizon. Seriously… if they were the only mobile service provider left on the planet, I’d go without. They’re in the same camp as Comcast for me. Imagine my surprise when I started seeing co-branded advertising from those two crooks about 18 months ago. Truly a match made in hell.

    • Scott Tompkins

      Sounds about right… those sock cuckers have some kind of agreement in place to not compete with each other in certain markets on broadband so as to not start a price war, instead continuing to bleed the consumer with less options… So Fios isn’t even an option for me.

  • dhinged

    I just bought the Nexus 7 LTE and was going to add it to my share plan for $10… now Verizon doesn’t want me to? They have to live up to their obligations; everybody hammer Verizon until we get what we want. AND NO BLOATWARE!!!

    • JRomeo

      you can still do that…. add some other device to the share plan. tell them its an iPad or whatever… then take the sim and put it into your N7. done. problem solved.

      • WickedToby741

        It’s not quite that simple. For activation, Verizon needs the device IMEI. Currently Verizon is rejecting any and all Nexus 7 device IMEI’s as incompatible with their network (which is false).

        The only way to make this work is to physically have a separate tablet, such as an iPad, that is “certified” for Verizon’s network, activate the SIM on said tablet, and then just simply move the SIM over to the Nexus 7.

        This is not a feasible solution for most people because it requires owning a separate tablet. Besides, theoretically if Verizon discovers you aren’t using the device they think you’re using they can cut off service.

        The point is that not only is Verizon directly violating the spirit of a SIM-based technology, but they’re violating the restrictions the FCC held them to as part of the Block C spectrum acquisition (which they were arguably violating by blocking Google Wallet as well).

        And suggesting their system just simply wasn’t ready is naive. I refuse to believe that the largest and, as they claim, most reliable carrier was caught with their pants down. They knew the Nexus 7 was coming with advertised Verizon support. They could have taken the necessary steps to make sure their system supported activation of LTE-only devices but they refused. Now they’re claiming that the Nexus 7 has to go through some mythical “certification” process.

        • tomn1ce

          The FCC should hit them with a huge fine for not abiding with the terms of the Block C spectrum acquisition. Vzw has violated the terms several times already it’s time to make them pay.

        • JRomeo

          For the record, I agree with you. AT&T is the same exact way when you bring a Nexus4 onto their service…

        • mcl630

          It’s telling that the Chromebook Pixel (also LTE only, no CDMA support) was approved by Verizon and can be activated on Verizon without a problem. Not that surprising, since Verizon doesn’t sell anything that competes with the Chromebook, but they certainly sell tablets that compete with the N7.

  • ReverseRoxas

    I see a lot of wireless carrier rage, but lets be honest here. There is no perfect wireless carrier, especially in the Big 4. T-Mobile has lackluster coverage for most of America, AT&T and Verizon can be pretty greedy at times and engage in some jerkish activities… And then there’s Sprint who has a great network for voice and texting… Data is just the pits with them.

  • WickedToby741

    “Any apps”

    *blocks Google Wallet*

    “Any devices”

    *blocks Nexus 7*

    Feels good to be free from the chains of Verizon and rocking a Nexus 4 on GoPhone.

    • sdrawkcab25

      google wallet has been unblocked with the latest wallet update

      • addicuss

        no, the app still cant use the secure element so you cant pay for things with it. wallet on verizon is a gimped version of wallet

        • builder_bob

          this ^^^^

          Google Wallet is useless without NFC. Which VZW is blocking solely for greed reasons.

          • sdrawkcab25

            useless to you, maybe, but there are still plenty of people who will enjoy the ability to send money with the app, and use it to hold rewards cards and get coupons….

  • addicuss

    Seriously what the hell is the fcc even doing these days. The second they blocked google wallet the FCC should have batted them down. if they had they wouldn’t be pulling this now. Show a company you aren’t going to enforce rules and they’ll increasingly take liberties with them.

  • rabidhunter

    Yeah Verizon, any apps, any device. Get with it.

  • brew1brew

    If you want to help fix the problem go to http://www.fcc.gov/complaints and file a complaint, that is if you are a Verizon customer and have been refused. complaints do hurt the carriers and if they get enough complaints about a particular issue, especially a compliance issue, they will fix it.

  • dgarra

    I love Verizon coverage, hate them as a company.