Verizon Global Phones Shopping Guide.
Can I activate an unlocked phone on Verizon network?
Buying an unlocked phone and making it work on Verizon Wireless may not be an easy task to accomplish. Since the Big Red carrier relies on CDMA network for voice and text services, the handset needs to support this technology, or it will be of no use to you. However, there are a few models that can be purchased unlocked and should work on Verizon without any problems, namely the Verizon Global Phones that support CDMA and GSM frequencies. For instance iPhone 6S
, iPhone 6S Plus
and Motorola Nexus 6
What are the Verizon Global Phones?
On the other hand, if you want to bring a Verizon Global Phone to another network, you won't face so many issues. All Verizon LTE phones currently launched by Verizon are dual-band equipped with both CDMA and GSM radios
and moreover are SIM lock free - unlocked. It means that a Verizon phone can be taken to any carrier, such as: AT&T, T-Mobile, Straight Talk, Metro PCS, as long as the frequencies match.
What about 4G LTE Internet?
As for the 4G LTE speeds in some cases they will match too, since AT&T and T-Mobile each support LTE bands 2 and 4 (the same as Verizon) and Sprint supports one band class that is common to Verizon: band 2 (1900 MHz). If you plan to take the phone abroad, though, it may be a bit more complicated and will require some research, since for example carriers in Europe use different LTE frequency band classes than operators in the US.
Although it's not entirely impossible to buy an unlocked phone and use it on Verizon, if you want to make sure it will work properly, your choice will be limited to a few models at the moment. For this reason, it probably would be a better idea to buy a device made specifically for Verizon. You can still get a used
or refurbished phone
instead of buying an overpriced new model straight from the carrier, and this way you will be certain that you won't encounter any issues.