Don't buy your Google Pixel from Verizon

The Google Pixel and Pixel XL are really solid phones. You can say they're a bit on the spendy side considering how much cheaper the past few Nexus phones have been, but Google is clearly swinging for the fences here.

Part of that plan is a multi-pronged retail approach that includes partnering with Verizon in the U.S. to get the new Pixels out in stores and in front of average consumers. But just because Google has struck a deal with Verizon to carry the phones doesn't mean you need to go with that option — Google is also selling the phones directly through the Google Store, and through its own carrier Project Fi.

We've started to learn the details of how Verizon will handle the Pixel phones, and most of the news isn't good for the savvy consumer who thinks about the intricacies of how they'll experience their phone. Here's why you should seriously consider bypassing Verizon if you make a Google Pixel purchase.

Bloat apps

Verizon is known for its bloatware just as much as any other carrier. Both its own-branded Verizon apps and plenty of pay-to-play partner apps fill up phones you buy from Verizon. If you buy a Pixel or Pixel XL from Verizon (opens in new tab) it won't have the full suite of garbage, but you'll get three apps nonetheless: Verizon Messages, Go90 and My Verizon. They should be uninstallable, but just knowing that they're pre-loaded is something you shouldn't have to deal with.

Having just three apps installed is a step in the right direction for Verizon, and I recognize that, but it needs to go all the way and stop installing these apps. You can install them from Google Play if you want, and that's how it should be handled.

Slower updates

Update: Verizon has since clarified its stance on the matter of updates. While the carrier will indeed certify and be involved in testing updates, it also plans to release them simultaneously with Google's release to unlocked models.

Part of the appeal of a Pixel phone (and Nexuses before it) is that it'll be update directly by Google on a regular cadence, guaranteed. This isn't entirely the case for the Pixels purchased from Verizon, however. In a bit of a capitulation, Google is letting Verizon handle platform updates going forward on the Pixels it sells — and this should be expected, as Verizon wants to verify things like network performance before thousands of phones get new software.

For what it's worth Google says that it is still handling monthly security updates itself, and Verizon has historically let those slide on through quickly with phones this year; just look at the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge's track record. But future platform updates potentially lagging behind their arrival on unlocked Pixels doesn't feel good — a couple days may be okay, but how long are you willing to wait? For an enthusiast owner, probably not very long.

Encrypted bootloader

This last point is one that probably has the smallest number of people who care but for those people has the biggest impact: Verizon will encrypt the Pixel's bootloader so you can't unlock it. Now this really shouldn't be all that surprising considering this is Verizon's policy for every phone it sells, but considering that the bootloader will be unlockable when you buy the phone SIM-unlocked, it's a bit disappointing.

If you want to unlock your Pixel's bootloader for future application of factory images, use of custom ROMs or other flashable customizations, don't even consider buying from Verizon.

The Google Store has you covered

Google Store

Even if you didn't think the few extra apps, slower updates and an encrypted bootloader were a very big deal (though at least one of those should be), the biggest thing that should keep you from buying through Verizon is the availability of Google's own shopping experience.

The Google Store will sell you a Pixel or Pixel XL for the same price, with free shipping, in whatever configuration you'd like. It also offers you 24-month interest-free financing, just like Verizon will. The Pixel or Pixel XL you buy from Google directly will also still work on Verizon just fine — just pop in your SIM card and you'll be up and running in no time. The only restriction will be the lack of HD Voice and Wi-Fi calling. (Update: Google has confirmed that the unlocked Pixels will work with VoLTE, HD Voice and Wi-Fi calling on Verizon. Hooray!)

It's important for Google to have Verizon as a partner. But that doesn't mean you should buy from the carrier.

Don't get me wrong. It's important for Google to get its new Pixels out in the world, sitting in Verizon stores and on Verizon's website, being sold to normal people who walk in and make their buying decision with a quick stop at their local carrier store on their way home from work. Those people don't care about slightly slower platform updates or an encrypted bootloader, and they'll enjoy using their Pixel or Pixel XL.

But that doesn't mean that you, the savvy consumer who thinks about all the details, have to make that decision. Because there is another perfectly good way to buy a new Pixel or Pixel XL that happens to also let you bypass Verizon's meddling in your phone: store.google.com (opens in new tab).

When you add it all up, I struggle to see a reason why you'd buy the new Google Pixel from Verizon. Sure some people won't know about the Google Store, or will prefer to buy directly from Verizon as they have for years and maybe trade in their old phone for whatever crazy promotion Verizon is currently running. But you don't have to make that mistake. You can be ahead of the curve and buy from Google, knowing you're getting a better overall experience and an unencumbered phone, while using any carrier you prefer — yes, even if that's Verizon.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

305 Comments
  • Thank you for writing this and sharing this with the world Andrew. I'll be sharing this to all of my social media.
  • WHAT THIS DOES TO THE RESALE VALUE OF YOUR PIXEL/XL...?.... When buying your Pixel second hand,... You will now have to "VERIFY" if it is a Verizon model....!!! Verizon models will not resale very well. I see a future fiasco in the works.
  • Slow down there speedy. No need to get all worked up. This will only affect the price if the majority of people buying resale are somewhat tech savvy. If not, then it really should have no affect whatsoever.
  • Actually there is a reason to get worked up, it sounds like the Verizon versions are locked to Verizon and that's that. I hope they do get branded. Verizon sucks, no thanks.
  • I just got my Pixel XL from my work Verizon account and put my personal T-Mobile SIM in it and its working perfectly. There is no Carrier Lock on these phones! Just Bootloader lock on the Verizon version.
  • Forget the Carrier Block, I'm specifically worried about the bootloader lock. If I buy a Pixel thinking I will have the ability to develop on it, only to find out that it's a Verizon model that can't be developed on, I'm going to be P I S S E D!
  • They do and it's been shown that they have been f'in customers over for years and deserve nothing. But fear not my friend because soon carriers will go under as more people buying unlocked phones
  • The carriers won't go under, they'll just start charging more for data.
    Remember, Verizon is losing customers and still refuses to get back on the Unlimited** bandwagon.
  • True we'll be paying$120 a month for 6gig
  • So just find an idiot to buy it, that isn't hard at all
  • Don't buy a Google device from a carrier, whether it's a Nexus 6/GNex or a Pixel. Enough said. There's an unlocked option. Go for it.
  • It's not a coincidence that every time Google partners with a carrier, the carrier basically mandates the prices be set artificially high. Verizon doesn't want to sell a phone for $400. They want a $400 phone that they can can charge $650 for, and one that won't take sales away from Apple or Samsung.
  • Well of course.That upcharge and the activation fee is how they get by with selling you "interest free" phones. Of course the Umbrella Corporation, I mean Verizon still gouges with their monthly fees.
  • Does numbersync work with unlocked phones?
  • Amen to that. I learned that lesson about this years ago when I was on AT&T. That's why I only buy unlocked phones now.
  • I couldn't agree more. I did buy a s7 edge from tmobile this time around but I have always(and will next time, this time was a one off) will be buying unlocked. I do not understand why these companies don't just released a unlocked along with one's from carriers on launch day Options are ALWAYS best. Give the consumer options. And plus I'd never go to verizon anyway. Atnt can suck it too, especially.
  • Common sense, it gives the carriers an exclusive window to make more sales before the devices are available unlocked. No secret there.
  • My poppa sells these phones 5x is $367
  • I was just wondering this, thanks for writing/sharing this, it really helps me decide on where to buy my Pixel.
  • +1
  • What about Jerry's tweet about AT&T carrying the Pixel next month?
  • Now you know none of them will reply to this rumor...
  • *patiently waits for Jerry to show up*
  • Lol IF that happens AT&T will have their shit locked up tight too.
  • I'd actually guess it would be a little bit worse considering how fond AT&T is of sim locking their phones...
  • Isn't AT&T one of the better carriers in regards to updates? AFAIK they were the only one willing to give full control of updates to Apple when they first came out, and Microsoft negotiated a deal with them as well, I believe. Now in regards to locking and bootloaders, that's a whole different story.
  • So much for taking OS updates seriously. I guess selling out is the cost of selling phones on a large scale.
  • At&t kicks ass man I switched from Sprint and yeah been great
  • Don't buy from an android phone from carrier is the take away from a long time..and it continues with Pixel. The only phone that can be bought from a carrier without worrying is an iPhone. Apple has put the carriers in the right place.
  • I couldn't agree more. I've never understood why carriers sell phones anyway, or why anyone would ever buy a phone from a carrier. Your carrier is basically your ISP. It is in their best interest to sell you a device that can only be used with them so you are stuck and dont have the option to choose someone else. Carriers sell internet access. Would you buy your computer from Comcast as well as your internet? On the other thing you said, I also agree. Apple is the only company that has the ability to mandate how carriers handle their phones. The carrier's will basically do whatever Apple wants because they can't risk losing the iPhone. They would simultaneously lose millions of customers.
  • yeah google phones should be bought unlocked from google or the experience is just ruined by the carrier bloat. might as well buy another phone if you want to buy from carrier
  • Does anyone know if Best Buy models activated on Verizon count as bootloader locked or unlocked?
  • If you go to bestbuy.com and click the Pre-order button for the Pixel , the list consists of all Verizon versions. No unlocked option.
  • Carrier phones bought at Best Buy are the same as buying them directly from the Carrier. So, yes... these will have the locked bootloader as well.
  • Don't buy from Best Buy, they charge more when you buy the phone at full price
  • Yes they do.
  • Best buy is no place to buy phones. Stay away.
  • Counterpoint, Google's insurance does not offer coverage for loss and theft, while Verizon's does. If Verizon lets you add their insurance to your BYOD, then buy it from Google, but sometimes they don't. So if you don't care about the points above, like me, but want to make sure you're covered for anything that could happen to your new $1000 phone, buy it from Verizon. No, I don't work for Verizon, but I know how handy the loss and theft coverage is. I've only had to get two insurance replacements over the last 6 years and they've both been because of theft.
  • Great point, not to mention the Verizon that we have today is a pretty far cry from the Verizon that totally screwed up the GNex launch and updates. With Flagships Verizon pretty regularly delivers updates in a timely manner when they are released by the manufacturer, I am not saying they are perfect but no carrier is, hell how long did it take Google to push out the Nexus 6 update? If all of this was happening in a vacuum I would completely agree, but the Android landscape has changed since then and it has become obvious to carriers that there are merits to updating their phones. Again, not perfect but as the poster above me points out there are benefits, and this new relationship between Google and Verizon is somewhat of an unknown at this point.
  • Yes.
  • Hey thats not right. I just bought my Pixel XL this week and Project Fi has a $99 dollar option for 2 year full phone replacement for any issue that might arise.
  • You might wanna read through your coverages again. Google and Fi don't cover loss and theft, only malfunction and breakage. https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6337239
  • Not every issue. It does not cover loss/theft.
  • Great point and been saying this..If Verizon sells the phone and you bought it from Google Asurion will still accept it from my experience..(Believe me ive done it)..Once you stick your verizon sim card in the phone it will register as a Verizon phone..I also give them my imei # just to cover my A**..I would never buy a $1000 phone that's not covered with theft protection..Doesn't make sense..Who cares that you pay $9.00 a month for insurance..After the money is spent it's gone just like you pay for full coverage on your car insurance every month..You just never know what will happen..I use unlocked phones on Verizon like the Nexus 6p and iPhone 6s but I use my Verizon S7 for MetroPCS bc all Verizon LTE phones come GSM unlocked out the box..
  • I just did a quick Google search and found a phone insurer that covers loss and theft also. The quote was $10.99 for a Galaxy s7 with a $175 deductible. I don't know how that compares to Verizon's price but it is an option that would keep you out of the carrier contract lock.
  • You missed one important reason FOR buying on Verizon: If you have a 10gb (or more) data plan Verizon will give you a $25 per month credit toward a 24 month payment plan. A $649 Pixel costs $27 per month. The net cost would be $2 per month. Wouldn't that be considered savvy?
  • What is this plan called and are you sure they still offer it? Only asking because the last few times I went to Verizon to buy a phone and inquired about this plan (which I had heard of as well) they had no idea what I was talking about. They looked at me as if I was crazy. Finally, one associate said they no longer offered that plan. They then explained that the new plan was to pay off the phone in full over their 24 month payment plan and the monthly charge per line would go down from $40/month to $20 going forward.
  • More Everything Plan.
  • You would think that. However, as a Blackberry Priv owner, I can tell you stories about Verizon that will curl you toes. The short story.... Four months after making the Priv available all updates ended. Blackberry was still releasing patch bundles at least once a month. In the patch bundles, there were security, stability, and functionality patches. EVERY CARRIER BUT VERIZON HAS PUSHED THESE PATCHES. There are now 317 vulnerabilities left unpatched (including several listed as level 5 or higher by NIST). There were patches that resolved overheating and other critical issues. It even brought the OS from Lollipop to Marshmallow because of the fine-grained security control it offered. I've submitted complaints to the FCC, FTC, my state's Attorney General, the VP of Verizon Wireless and others without success. Verizon fluffed them all off with a "as long as the phone can call and text, we don't have to update it". I implore you, if you value your sanity, do not buy a locked Verizon Android phone.
  • I love my Priv, and it sucks the only network with decent coverage in my area is Verizon. I really wish there was a network that was even marginally close, so I could bail. I am sick of their crap.
  • Can you elaborate where you saw this?
  • Per the rep I just chatted with on VZW.com The $25 per month discount on a payment plan would apply to the (normally $40) access fee making this $15 per month.
  • Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but this is how I understood this when I discussed it with a Verizon associate a little while back: When upgrading your phone with Verizon under the new plan structures, you are able to rid yourself of a certain amount of your monthly fees: $15, $20, or $25, depending on which plan you have. These fees are the old "phone subsidies" carriers would add to the monthly fee to cover the "2 year upgrade" promotions they used to offer (i.e. get a brand new "insert phone here" for just $100, or free, with a new 2 year contract). You would pay that phone subsidy every month, which covered the extra ~$500 that phone actually should have cost you. Now that they've gotten rid of contracts, they don't offer the 2-year upgrade prices, and hence they don't charge the phone subsidy to cover their losses, as you already are paying full price of the phone. They do allow you to still get a 2-year promotion on a very limited number of phone, but if you do this, you don't get that $15, $20, or $25 discount. So, having said all that, my understanding is that those discounts will still apply if you buy from the Google Store and bring you phone in to the Verizon store to activate it. This is exactly what I did with my wife's 5X last year. We bought it on Black Friday from the Google Store, took it to the Verizon store, activated it, then saw $25/month come off our monthly bill. Very possible Verizon has changed this policy, but that's how I understand it.
  • When the New Verizon Plans first came out I remember them specifically saying that when the lines were switched to this new plan (and were no longer under a 2 year contract) the line access charge would drop to $20, specifically when using devices purchased through Verizon. Well this must have change because I'm paying $20 line access charge for my 6P on Verizon. Here's what Verizon's fact page says now: "Why do some smartphones have different monthly line access charges on the new Verizon Plan? Monthly line access charges for smartphones on the new Verizon Plan differ based on:
    a. If you're currently making monthly device payments or own the phone, the monthly line access charge will be $20
    b. If you purchased the phone at a discounted price, the monthly line access charge is $40
    You can switch to the new Verizon Plan anytime, but the monthly line access charges for all devices on 2-year contracts will remain at $40 until each device contract expires. Once each device contract expires, the monthly line access charge will automatically drop to $20."
    https://www.androidcentral.com/e?link=https2F2F... It doesn't say anything anymore about having to purchase the phone through Verizon in order to get the $20 line charge.
  • I thought Google stated that the Pixel will support WiFi Calling...
  • It will, but the real question is whether or not Verizon will let the unlocked Pixels use WiFi Calling on their network. I've read that it SHOULD work, but I'm not sure anything has actually been confirmed. I'd also like to know about Android's built-in Visual Voicemail and whether or not Verizon is going to allow it. Neither my Nexus 6 or 6P were able to use it.
  • Verizon has their own visual voicemail as well I believe... Either way I think these are valid questions!
  • Visual voicemail works on my Google Nexus 6 on Verizon, not on my Nexus 5X, for some crazy reason they don't support LG Nexus devices visual voicemail, and from the looks of it the Huawei Nexus device.
  • Same with me. There's an app for the N6 but not for the 5X. Also, HD Voice works on both our N6 and the 5X. WiFi calling does not. I wonder if VZW will prevent HD Calling on the non VZW purchased Pixels?
  • I'm not referring to Verizon's VV, but Android's built-in VV (not an app).
  • You can use Google Voice as a visual voicemail app. That's all I use it for. That should work.
  • I shouldn't need to nor do I want to. Android has VV built into the OS; we should be able to use it.
  • Go to the Google play Store, type in Verizon visual voice mail, it's the one that says by Motorola mobility.
  • I'm not referring to Verizon's VV, but Android's built-in VV (not an app) which has existed since the release of Marshmallow.
  • Verizon has to allow it as well. Again, using the Blackberry Priv as an example... It supports wifi calling but Verizon won't turn it on for their network.
  • Id keep the "My Verizon" app to keep track of the data used.
  • Yeah, same as the T-mobile app pretty much and I actively went out and installed that. The other two are not welcome.
  • I use it to see my data usage on my home screen and pay my bill. Pretty great app.
  • The built in data usage isn't accurate enough for you? It matches up fine on mine with the MyAtt app - which I use to pay the bill.
  • And don't forget, Verizon charges a ridiculous 'upgrade fee'. Even though you're paying for the phone in full. I think it's around $20-$30. They're policy is also to open the package and set up the phone for you unless you buy it from their website. After years of buying from Verizon, I bought my moto x from moto maker 3 years ago and my Nexus 5X directly from Google last year, and the experiences were far superior. Night and day. I don't think I could ever go back to buying from Verizon. Glad to see this article posted to inform the masses.
  • On the Best Buy website it clearly says "Verizon," so it's obviously the locked Verizon version that Best Buy is selling. Didn't Google say that Verizon is their only retail partner? That would basically mean that, unless you get the unlocked version straight from Google, it's the locked-down Verizon version.
  • I'd argue don't buy any phone from Verizon. Sent from my Sony Xperia X Compact
  • LOL
  • He is right though..I would add don't buy any carrier branded phones.
  • Don't buy any phones. They're all terrible.
  • Yes! Lol
  • I upgraded today at my local Verizon store and had a great experience. Not everything is doom and gloom, guys.
  • I am not sure I agree 100% with this, maybe we should try to be more balanced. Some individuals can go into VZW or online and trade in their current phone and get 300 dollars off the Pixel and a VR from Google and get a great phone. Now that Google is selling the phone similarly to how Apple has in the past maybe they will handle releases similarly. I am sure I will get slammed for this but not everyone can afford to buy it right out and will opt for a 2 year contract and price of 199. Hey I am by no means a fan of VZW but I am a fan of Google and however they can sale the most units is what matters most to me!!!!! So buy a PIxel or PIxel XL...period!!!! Wherever you can get the best deal and are happy with the service you receive. Thanks
  • I was hoping that someone would have the sense to bring this up! I've got an ex-bootlooped G4 lying around and can get a $300 trade-in value for that with Verizon. I'd be lucky to get half that if i sold it on Swappa...
  • If you check the trade in value on your G4 on Verizon, you'll see that they won't give you the full $300. It says up to $300.
  • You are very correct111 They only offered me $200 credit for my Nexus 6P.
  • Good Call, I got excited by the wording for a minute. Checked the trade in value on my year old g4, $12.60. HA puke.
  • I use the Google Nexus 6 and Nexus 5X on Verizon just fine, and they are Google phones, bought on swappa, in regards to Verizon messages, I like it because it can be integrated with your PC or tablet, you can be on your PC or tablet and send and receive text messages.
  • You can do that with any messaging app. Just install mighty text or something similar and boom, text from your computer or tablet.
  • I use Google Messenger but still get all the texts on my tablet and PC via Verizon Messages.
  • That's how mightytext works too
  • That's all well and good and such... But for those who haven't checked out the Google store and project fi, they're already sold out. Ontop of that, no they don't "offer payments"... You have to have a credit score of over 720 to be allowed to make payments, so a good majority of people won't be able to get it that way. For them, they'll need to wait for best buy to open up pre-orders, and hope that their credit policy is less restrictive, which I doubt. Nearly 900 dollars for a "Google phone" is pretty outrageous... That's a house payment! I wish manufacturers would get their sticks out of their butts and realize that people aren't made of money. Sure they can get payments through a carrier, but that's just a way to force you into giving them extra money for an already over priced phone! Look at xbox and the ps4.... They are under 400 bucks, and are generally seen as more powerful than a phone... Slap a modem into it and presto you could have a Weirdo whacky phone... OnePlus used to understand this, and would give people a super phone for half the price as everyone else... Nexus phones used to be the same way. Now it's all "welp we want some extra cash so lets Jack up the price by 500 bucks ok?"... It's despicable...
  • Google has added a second Finance option outside project Fi.
  • Resale value will take a hit if you buy the Verizon phone as well I bet.
  • I just hope Fi offers a screaming deal like they do with the 5X.
  • Word
  • Ok great. Google has a financing option. But you're locked in for two years. I want the option to either continue to pay payments or trade it in after the year mark. I can do that now with my carrier with every phone I have so this is a non option. Besides, I don't want too. My personal eyeballs dictate that this phone is ugly.
  • Just so you know Andrew, there is one such possible reason, if you have a business account with Verizon the Pixel is only $199 and $319 for the XL on a one year contract (which is actually 10 months) . . So while I agree that these Verizon restrictions are loathesome it may be an option for the cost conscious business user.
  • 100% agree... Good article and still doesn't matter because AC readers will still buy from Verizon starting some reason and later come to complain that Google is not pushing updates to Verizon version, bootloader is locked and so on... NO reason to buy this crippled version at any cost.
  • @Andrew Lack of HD Voice and Wifi Calling? Is that confirmed?
  • Curious about this, WiFi calling is very important to me.
  • Yeah if confirmed that seems like a big deal and a major reason not to buy it through the google store. I don't have Verizon but I would think twice before buying if that were true.
  • I'm also wondering if this is confirmed.
  • s'what we understand, which is why I wrote it here. if they flip-flop and offer it it'd be a pretty huge switch.
  • What's your source for that? It sounds more like just a misunderstanding, given that the Nexus 6P with a Verizon SIM has HD calling.
  • Not saying it will work the same, but HD voice (VoLTE) works on Verizon on my BYOD Moto X Pure.
  • Still looking forward to the day Google stops pushing the "only on Verizon" marketing. Verizon likely requires it, but it sure isn't helping sales. I've seen some enthusiasts online question if the Pixels will work on their carrier due to that marketing. If some people online are questioning it, I can only imagine the normal consumers will likely be turned away if they're interested, but not on Verizon.
  • Oh no, bloatware. "Can you hear that?"
  • Folks love to jump to conclusions here... Also, hating on Verizon is mandatory on this site lol .. The 3 VZW apps actually are installed from the Google Play Store, so you can uninstall like a regular app.... https://www.reddit.com/r/Android/comments/561wpq/google_pixel_preloaded_...
  • Yep.
  • I would get it from Verizon for one reason, and one reason only. My employer pays for my phones and service. If I had to pay for it myself I'd be on another carrier and purchase the phone directly from Google.
  • Nice of your employer to do.
  • If you are on Verizon then most likely you will be using the My Verizon app so there are a whole 2 apps you can uninstall- big deal. The bootloader reason is about the only issue I see as being a problem. You are getting security updates and since the Pixel is not loaded with Verizon bloatware I am willing to bet the OS updates won't be that delayed. Sometimes the Verizon hate is ridiculous.
  • Try not to be too sane in the membrane.. The Google zombies will eat your brains... For me it's two VZW apps, the My VZ app and the Messages app, which happens to remain my favorite messages app after many years.. So for me that means I will be uninstalling/hiding more Google bloat than VZW bloat lol
  • If we buy directly from Google. Will we get WiFi calling?
  • Did you read the article? If so, comprehension classes should be on your wish list for xmas.
  • no guarantees. I know a bunch of other phones such as the 6P and moto x pure DO NOT HAVE WI-FI calling available. VoLTE (advanced calling) does work, however.
  • Nice catch Andrew. I saw this news too.
  • Google really needs to fix the advertising on these phone as they are misleading. The ad showing on this page says the Pixel is only on Verizon, which isn't true. This could potentially steer people away from it thinking it won't work on their current carrier.
  • Don't buy a Pixel phone, period! Why?
  • Good article and I think it drives the main point home well - don't buy phones from the carriers. I think we are finally moving in this direction here in the US and I think it's a good thing. When I was an iPhone type it didn't matter because Apple didn't allow anything to be installed. Now that I'm living in the Android world it's a very different scenario. Hopefully if people start buying devices elsewhere the carriers will stop making features like VoLTE and wifi calling exclusive to devices they have sold and make them available for all.
  • This strongly contradicts what the Pixel is supposed to be about. Its supposed to be a simple device that "just works". Thanks to carrier exclusivity, we're now talking about WiFi Calling not working on unlocked, Bootloader restrictions, delayed updates, Verizon apps pre-installed. So basically, while the look of the device, Google Assistant, and hardware is the same....you are not free to do what you want if you purchase the Verizon model.
  • And some things wont work if you buy from googs. Visual voicemail etc etc..
  • A simple device that "just works" doesn't need its bootloader tinkered with. So how is having it locked contradictory to that?
  • Soooo..... 3 Verizon apps, 2 I would keep, 1 is garbage.... That means I would be uninstalling MORE "Google bloat" then.... If I bought this device... BTW, I've found the Verizon Messages app to be superior to any "default" one.... Definitely better than that Allo mess....
  • Yes, along with HD voice and Wi-Fi calling. The term carrier bloatware in this instance is way over used. I can get a pixel or pixel xl through Verizon for $200 with HD voice and Wi-Fi calling and your so called bloat apps are a whopping 3 Verizon apps, 2 of which I use by choice, daily, and the other go90 crap I will simply delete. I think this article tries very hard to make Much Ado About Nothing, but in the end if you want to buy the phone, by it however you want to. No, I'm not happy about the major platform updates being delayed by a bit, but to be honest, I don't give a flip about the bootloader being unlockable or not.
  • How are you getting it for only $200??
  • When you are on the annual upgrade program using an eligible device, once you pay off 50% of that device, whether it is in 12 equal monthly payments or you pay off the 50% at an accelerated rate you are then free to choose another phone.
    $200 in the here-and-now will take me to the 50% pay off on my S7 Edge and allow me to choose another phone that is annual upgrade eligible, which includes the new pixel phones. If I wait until the start of November my upfront fee drops from $200 to $165 to flip over to any annual upgrade eligible phone of my choosing, including the pixels.
  • This right here is an excellent explanation of how the phone doesn't cost $200, but many people will think it does.
  • No zebra, I don't believe the phone cost $200. I said that I can flip to the phone for $200.It is a payment system in perpetuity as long as you choose to carry on with it. I know that and I'm okay with that as long as I want to continue it. If you select 1 phone and make the payments on it for 2 years, then yes, you do own that phone outright. I don't want that. I want a new phone on an annual basis, and I recognize what the program entails. Of course if I just wait until next march that eliminates any upfront fee that I have discussed up to this point whether that is $200 or $165 next month, at that point it simply becomes the device is 50% paid for, turn it in and get the next one to begin the two years of payments again and that is the key there, the TWO years of payments beginning again and have the next shiny new device. As long as you understand what the program entails, each person must make the decision for themselves if they are okay with that or not, I am.
  • I know Jerry and probably others will agree with you about Google's own installed 'bloatware'
  • Really no reason at all. I pre-ordered with Google and they sent me an email that they will also offer a free daydream headset.
  • Wifi calling
    Vzw visual voicemail (Google voice doesn't work for me for reasons i don't feel like going in to)
    Sexy blue phone. There's three reasons.
  • Verizon is also giving away the free VR headset.
  • "You can say they're a bit on the spendy side" WTF???? I think you mean a bit on the PRICEY side. I'm a bit on the spendy side, if there is such a word, i.e. I spend too much.
  • I will absolutely need an answer to the WiFi calling question. I'm moving in a few months out into the sticks..weak Verizon coverage, and NO AT&T or T-Mobile. I will need to receive calls and messages over Wifi
  • If you are on Verizon and Wi-Fi calling is extremely important to you I would be leaning very, very strongly toward the Verizon version of this phone.
  • "Carrier bloatware" is the new gluten.
  • My old Note 4 is Gluten free. No bloatware.
  • Lol, hilarious!
  • "The only restriction will be the lack of HD Voice and Wi-Fi calling" Verizon it is then. WiFi calling is a must.
  • I use WiFi calling using the Google messenger app.
  • But on what phone?
  • "It also offers you 24-month interest-free financing, just like Verizon will." I think it's important to note that with Google's financing option, you're opening a new line of credit whereas with Verizon, there is no hit to your credit if you have a good payment history. That's a big deal to some folks.
  • Yes, it would be a shame to have a freaking phone purchase brought up and called into question when you were financing your next vehicle or looking at a home loan because each and every hard check and line of credit counts.
  • Yeah, but $299 for a Pixel 128GB is really tempting if you still have e the subsidy option....
  • Yes, but that would increase my line access fee by $25/month making the cost of my service $600 MORE over the 2 yr contract. That makes it an $899 phone, not a $299 phone. There is no real difference in purchasing at the discounted contract rate and full retail, except with the contract you pay a big chunk of the cost up front.