Nexus 7 LTE gets shunned by Verizon, can’t be activated

September 17, 2013
26

Back when Google announced their brand new and improved 2013 Nexus 7, it was met with tons of excitement due to the fact they'd be offering an 4G LTE model with support for AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon all for just $349. After a month of waiting last week the tablet with LTE finally went up for sale. But now we're hearing bad news that Verizon (once again) isn't playing nice with Nexus devices.

It appears that Verizon isn't too keen on the idea of the Nexus 7 working on their network, and as a result, won't let users activate the new Nexus 7. Don't get us wrong, the LTE Nexus 7 will work fine with Verizon, as we saw from Droid-Life last week. The problem is Verizon apparently doesn't want it on their network, and won't let you add a line and "activate" it with a SIM or a share everything plan.

However, if you have a SIM just throw it in the Nexus 7 and you'll be up and running in no time, it's the activation part that isn't working, and might never actually work. A few of our readers were complaining about the situation earlier this week, and today Verizon's official Twitter support page replied, and things aren't looking good. Basically saying "not all LTE tablets are created equal. It's not part of our line up & can't be activated" in response to questions about the new Nexus 7. Fail!

Screen Shot 2013-09-17 at 10.02.52 AM

We have reached out to Verizon for more details, and will update the moment we learn more. At this time we've received a few different reports of Verizon not being able to activate or support the new slate, so hopefully you can get a SIM some other way.

As a reminder the Nexus 7 works with GSM (3G and faux 4G HSPA) with AT&T and T-Mobile, but not Verizon. LTE works for all three. The CDMA of Verizon's network being the issue here. It makes sense for them to not support a device that only works with LTE, even though they have the "widest LTE coverage in the US." If you aren't in an LTE area the device won't work at all, while an AT&T or T-Mobile variant will drop back to GSM and work without fail.

Are you having the same problem with Verizon? We're also getting scattered reports that AT&T might not "officially" support the Nexus 7 either. Drop us a comment below. Hopefully we learn more shortly, because this is a hot mess. Also, my faith in the LG Nexus 5 coming to Verizon is starting to dwindle.

-- Thanks Jeff, and everyone else who sent this in!


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  • sk102704

    Yeah I’d say that’s the nail in the coffin for the VZW Nexus 5.

    • Mc-Taz

      I think that may even be the reason Verizon doesn’t want to support the Nexus 7. It’s too bad for the people who would like Verizon service with Nexus devices, but it has become clear that Verizon doesn’t deserve the privilege of having a Nexus device on their network.

      • makapav

        If the FCC wasn’t sleeping with Verizon, they should have brought down massive fines on any carrier that refused to play like this.

  • JRomeo

    The FACT remains. Pop in an active LTE sim card and this will work… in other words… all LTE tablets compatible with verizon, at&t, and tmobile ARE IN FACT “created the same”. By Definition, a tablet created to be compatible with verizon’s LTE will be compatible… The same thing happened when my brother tried to activate his sim card on AT&T for use inside a Nexus4… the at&t rep told him they could not activate 4G internet on his Nexus4 because it was not an at&t phone…. the solution was to find an unused iPhone, and give them the IMEI number, and then they finally registered the sim card with 4G data speeds. Then plug that sim card into a Nexus4, and it works beautifully……. well, it appears we have to resort to the same thing with verizon….. Find a verizon device which uses an LTE sim card, activate LTE on that device, then remove the sim card and insert it into your Nexus7 tablet. Poblem Solved.

    • SmokeNMirrors

      Bing bing bing… we have a winner!

      • Demi

        No, the issue is that Verizon shouldn’t make someone jump through such hoops. Interoperability is required by the FCC. Verizon should do nothing more than activate service for FCC approved devices.

      • JRomeo

        I agree with you. However, if Verizon doesn’t want to cooperate, then users have no choice but to do these workarounds. I can only think of a couple reasons why Verizon would cooperate, and a lawsuit is one of them.

      • http://www.androidcommunity.com Cory Gunther

        Exactly.. dammit

  • Captain_Doug

    But they can’t? LTE is GSM tech meaning it’s open. Aren’t they supposed to let people hook up to their network?

  • ZJR

    Isn’t this a violation of the FCC’s open access requirement for their use of Band 13 LTE? These users need to file complaints with the FCC if they want this resolved. Nothing like a inquiry from the FCC to wake up Verizon on this issue.

  • ImmaDroid

    Because they didn’t make money off of it, they don’t want it. So stupid!!! I really wish that they would make the Nexus 5 the same way, so I can slip my sim in and be done with it. But dreams dont usually come true…

    • JRomeo

      they actually do make money by selling you their expensive LTE data plan for a monthly cost.

      • ImmaDroid

        Oh yea of course. But they are obviously not allowing the Nexus 7 because they didn’t sell it. Which again is BS. I’m holding on to my cheap unlimited, so they ain’t getting any extra money from me. They day I lose my unlimited is the day I’ll probably switch

      • Matthew Miranda

        someone is givng blowies to a Verizon rep

  • HamDog

    The bad part is that Google will charge you return shipping if you want to return your Nexus 7 LTE because you can’t sign up with Verizon. I called Google Nexus number before I ordered and they said it will work with Verizon. Now that I have it, they’ve changed their tone. And they want me to pay return shipping. This is misrepresentation.

    • Barnassey

      You are correct, but problem is how long will they make you twist in the wind for a refund?

  • msc101405

    I grabbed an iPad mini, activated Verizon LTE, and popped the Sim into my Nexus. Service is working great. iPad going back tomorrow.

    • http://www.androidcommunity.com Cory Gunther

      Nice!

      • msc101405

        Crazy that this was my best option. At least we know it works though.

  • ericinpoygan

    so can i put my Galaxy Nexus sim card in a LTE Nexus 7 and it will work on the Verizon network?

  • aj

    fuck vzw thats y there ass aint got anything good for a long time. besides a free months of tmo lte isnt all too bad of a deal.

  • rare72

    The Linux Community needs to stop support companies that take this approach to devices.

    • kazetsukai

      Maybe you should focus on the real problem (oligopolies) and bring companies back under charter. Limit operation to 7 years to prevent them becoming a nuisance to the public by bribing your government into complacency and getting you addicted to a service you don’t need.

  • VMWareRulez

    The reason for this is the 700mHz (AWS) spectrum was just purchased recently, meaning the hardware to support this is not yet integrated fully into VZW’s infrastructure. Also this means that only some VZW markets would be able to support AWS if it is turned up in those markets. There is work behind the scenes here that people just think all this cellular stuff is magic and can be turned on like a light switch. I know plenty people who work in the infrastructure side of the VZW House. When they say it is not a VZW approved device on their network, they mean it. They test the heck out of it to make sure that X number of devices will not bring down a tower or even a complete ring.

    It is the same concept in computing. Ask anybody in computer networking if they like an unapproved hub or a switch on their network. It could cause some major issues.

    • kazetsukai

      Stop being an apologist for cellular oligopolies. Anyone who isn’t an idiot knows that off-contract prices of $500 and above for basic touchscreen devices is rape, and “discount”, “contract prices” of devices at $300 is the customer paying in full for the device.

      Verizon doesn’t like a $250 device with the oomph and quality of their $800 devices (off contract) on their network. It calls into question why two devices with virtually the same SoC has a $500 price difference because of a radio.

      Contracts punish and lock-in. To facilitate the carrier’s ability to RAISE PRICES (you KNOW better – its getting more expensive!) and REDUCE QUALITY OF SERVICE (Take away Unlimited data and give you increasingly LIMITED data at the same price), they have to hold new devices hostage. To do that they have to overcharge for them, and pretend they’re giving you a deal when you sign the dotted line.

      And don’t even get me started about “Free phones”. They’re PAID FOR by the suckers who willingly, idiotically line up for the next iteration of their addictions every year to two years.

  • kazetsukai

    I don’t understand why anyone thinks it is acceptable that Verizon, effectively an ISP and Telecom, has any say over what devices go on their network. They utilize STANDARDS like LTE and WCDMA, so why are they doing it? To screw you morons for every CENT they can get.

    Until you stop finding this acceptable, you’ll continually get raped for every penny they can get, and you deserve it.