The activation for Nexus phones on Verizon Wireless has historically been a pain. It seems with Verizon moving away from contracts and subsidized phones, they have also improved with activating the Nexus line of phones.
While other sources were reporting that your best bet for activating your phone was to be an existing customer with an activated nanosim card already. I was previously a Sprint customer and was changing to Verizon with these phones for better network coverage in my area. I didn’t have an existing account and had limited options to work around the issue. Overall, I found the activation fairly straight-forward, it just took a lot of time on the phone to find out what I needed in order to make the process easier.
My main problem was that I was trying to prepare to activate the phones on day 1. That meant, I would need a nanosim from Verizon to arrive the same day as the phones or even earlier. I called Verizon and tried explaining the situation many times and was turned away. I was told I would need to go to a corporate store as phone support has no means of shipping out a sim card. I went to a corporate store (the nearest one is about an hour away) and was told that I would have to call phone support to get the sim card unless I had the phone with me. I didn’t have my Nexus yet and was not going to have a chance to drive to a corporate store for a while. I called phone support the next day, explaining that the store said I needed to call, and finally got someone that was willing to schedule the process over the phone for as soon as I received the devices.
Save yourself a lot of headache and wait until you have the IMEI for the phone. Ordering from Google, you will receive this in the shipping notice.
Once you have that Device ID, you can call 1–800–256–4646 and establish a new account with Verizon and they will FedEx the nanosim cards to your door. Slightly inconvenient, the package required a signature. (Meanwhile, Google is happy to send $1000+ worth of phones and leave it at your front door…)
The Google shipping order arrived in my email about 40 hours before the phones arrived at my door. I called Verizon that night with the Device ID and they shipped out the nanosim cards the next morning. The phones arrived 2 days before the sim cards arrived. At that point, I would recommend powering on the phones, connecting to WiFi and getting them fully setup and updated. Then, call Verizon at 1–800–256–4646 or using the activation website to complete the phone activation, number porting, and anything else you need choosing one of the data cap sizes for The Verizon Plan.
The process is pretty simple as long as you are patient and not trying to work ahead. Once you have the Device IDs, you have the greenlight to move to the next step. Once you have the phones and nanosims, you can activate easily as the phones are recognized as compatible with Verizon’s network. Of course, if you have a corporate Verizon store closer to you, this will give you another option for faster gratification. Verizon resellers will sell you the nanosim cards while corporate Verizon gives them to customers for free.