Verizon

Can I Buy a Phone Without a Plan?

Motorola Moto G7.

Episode 1604

Gloria from North Hollywood, CA

Gloria wants to know how can she buy a phone without a plan. She heard of a new phone plan called "Visible" for $40 a month. Leo says that Verizon's Visible plan is very interesting and she can buy an unlocked phone anywhere, including Amazon. She just has to be sure she gets a phone that supports Verizon. Here's a page that shows which phones are compatible - https://www.visible.com/compatibility

 Leo likes the Motorola Moto G7. Price is between $200-300. 

Why can't I use my Obama Phone with Verizon?

Motorola Moto G7

Episode 1597

John from Santa Barbara, CA

John got an "Obama Phone" with AirVoice Wireless. When he got a new Motorola Moto Phone that was unlocked, it says it uses GSM or LTE. And AirVoice Wireless only uses Verizon. Can he use the phone? Leo says that Verizon is CDMA, so a GSM phone won't work. But AirVoice also says they're an AT&T carrier. From the chatroom - input the APN settings listed here and it needs to be a phone that works with AT&T. https://apn.gishan.net/en/apn/airvoice/motorola-moto-g-4g-2nd-gen

Why can't I use my 4G phone on Verizon?

Tracfone LG Rebel 3

Episode 1596

Doug from Encinitas, CA

Doug bought a Tracfone LG Rebel 3 mobile phones. But the problem is, he can't get a phone number for it because Verizon doesn't support 4G anymore, only LTE. Whats the difference? Leo says that LTE is a bit faster, but it's odd that Verizon doesn't support it anymore. But they may have just killed 4G. Leo says to pull the SIM and try another carrier to see if it's not carrier locked. If it isn't, then go to Straight Talk.

Should I Use Verizon's VPN?

 Verizon Cloud

Episode 1576

David from Los Angeles, CA

David wants to know if he should back up his mobile device to Verizon Cloud. Leo says to not do it. They'll give a little bit for free, but they really want to charge extra for it. And he can back up to Google Drive for free. What about Verizon's VPN, is that worth $3.99 a month? Leo says that most paid VPNs are that much... but the question is, do we trust Verizon? Verizon is using McAfee's VPN services, and have in writing that they aren't logging user activity. So that's probably fine, especially at that price.

Can I just put my SIM into my new Samsung Galaxy S9?

Samsung Galaxy S9

Episode 1545

Patrick from California

Patrick bought a Samsung Galaxy S9 at Best Buy for Black Friday. Can he just drop his SIM card in or does he have to get it activated? Leo says he should just be able to drop his existing SIM into it and get started. Leo says that the FCC doesn't like carrier locks if the carrier isn't subsidizing the phone. So all he'll have to do is call the carrier and ask them to unlock it, if he needs to. But if he's a Verizon customer, it shouldn't be locked at all, and since he's not switching carriers, it should work if it uses the same SIM.

How can I use a mesh router on Verizon?

Episode 1520

Tony from California

Tony bought a new MESH router to use with his Verizon fiber optic internet connection. Leo says that Verizon uses a router/modem, so you'll need to change settings to bridge mode, so it can send the signal on to your new mesh router. Doctor Mom in the chatroom says you can put your Verizon modem into bridge mode, but you will lose some functions. It's just a matter if you can live with it.