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Verizon is OK With Isis Mobile Wallet Accessing the Secure Element on Your Phone, Just Not Google Wallet

Last week, we put together yet another new piece that discussed Verizon’s reasoning for not allowing Google Wallet to work on their NFC-equipped devices. In a response to an FCC complaint, VZW argued that since Google Wallet requires interaction with the “secure element” of a phone, that it’s different than normal applications, including other m-commerce apps. Since it needs to access this “secure element” in order to function, Verizon isn’t OK with it and has asked Google to make sure that it doesn’t work on their phones. However, with their own mobile payment app, they appear to be 100% behind an app using that same “secure element.” 

As you all know, Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T have been working on their own NFC-based mobile payment system known as Isis Mobile Wallet. It’s essentially identical to Google Wallet. Many of us have argued over the last year that these three carriers are simply blocking Google Wallet because they have their own payment system in the works, something that they all deny. While we may never know the complete truth to the story, this latest find by one of our readers who installed Isis on his Galaxy S3 is certainly worth mentioning.

In the screenshots above, taken directly from the Isis Mobile Wallet app on a Verizon Galaxy S3, you can see mentions of the previously talked about “secure element.” In fact, the phone requirements for the app speak of this “secure element” as a “dedicated component in your phone” used to store payment cards and everything else needed to properly run a mobile payment app with NFC. Basically, that’s everything that they said was bad about Google Wallet, and that if Google removed this requirement, that its app could be used on Verizon phones.

We had initially tossed out the idea that maybe Verizon was asking Google to add in NFC-SIM requirements to the app, since Isis works with newly created NFC-SIM cards. Whether that is or was the case, it doesn’t appear to matter, as Isis will still use the “secure element” inside your phone, which again, is the same “secure element” that Verizon mentioned as the reasoning behind their stoppage of Google Wallet. They clearly are OK with their own mobile payment app accessing this.

Look, we could probably argue and complain about Verizon and other carriers’ ridiculous control over smartphones for days, but in the end, these are all just more reasons to think about leaving your carrier and buying an unlocked phone like the Nexus 4. Once you have freed yourself from contracts and the subsidy cycle, your mobile experience will be so much more open and free.

Cheers Christopher!

  • Jason

    Verizon did not like how the app accessed the OS. So they did not want to put int on thier phones. So they created thier own with the NFC-SIM card which if you lose your phone they can freeze the wallet so no one can access your money unlike Google wallet.

  • JT

    I think Google should block Isis from the Play Store and tell Verizon we can play that game too…Google owns the store and software that Verizon’s phones run they can do the same thing right back to Verizo

  • Tony Graziano

    There are factors here in making Verizon and any other carrier remove their blocks for Google Wallet. Perhaps Verizon was right in requiring the data if stored on the phone is secure. Google updated Wallet to store the card data on their servers and not on the phone anymore. The only remaining question is if the google wallet pin is stored on the phone or on google’s servers. If all of this is stored on the server for google wallet, verizon has to make up another reason to deny the application. While there is a lot of discussion, Google is not about to file a lawsuit against Verizon and Verizon is not about to stop carrying android devices.

    It would be up to the consumers to file a petition with the FCC to ask them to investigate it. The question is since this involves payment and commerce (and there are other ways to pay), does it even fall under the FCC’s jurisdiction? My guess is that it doesn’t (yet) and would have to be looked at by the FDIC who is clueless on this type of thing. We can’t look at Europe where NFC is in greater use because their banking and telecom rules are very different altogether.

    It becomes clear the lawmakers in the US and the FCC need to formulate oversight to more align itself with where the technology is heading. Right now the FCC can rule as to whether Verizon is acting “anti” competitively, and I would venture to say they would not rule that way. Why? Stabucks, square and other payment forms are not blocked. So how does Google Wallet get into Verizon phones (legitimately)?

    Google needs to up the ante and offer Wallet in a way that gets around Verizon’s crybaby stance. It appears they are doing just that and have announced even more changes to make the application more plentiful.

    • That’s exactly where you’re wrong, Tony. Google does not need to turn into all the other apps for payment. Google created Wallet with NFC in mind. They have the support of major credit card companies as MasterCard, and Visa. Hell, half of the “other” mobile payments don’t really work in retailers, because the only thing their apps do, is create a barcode on your screen that the registers scan in. The problem with this is that 3/4 of the device screens will not allow a barcode laser to read. The reflection simply bounces back and creates an unreadable situation, which in turn, does not allow payment from your mobile devices.

      Google Wallet, however, utilizes the newest form of technology in which you simply tap and pay. This technology has been around for years in the form of PayPass and Visa’s PayWave technology, in which a chip, in Credit Cards would allow you the ability to simply wave your card in front of the machine. There is a wider spread of machines that already allow for this technology due to the fact that it has been around for much longer than today’s devices. Google simply perfected it on an NFC Device level.

      Also, the fact still remains that even if Google ups the ante and offers a different style wallet, in which a barcode, unable to be read by most laser scanners today, were to be created, They would let the carriers win while monopolizing their own form of Mobile Payment. I received an email (of which I posted the screenshot of in these very comments) that stated that Isis would need to set up the Secure Element ON my device… Whether this SE is the same as the one requiring access by Google, still remains to be seen, but all documentation would appear as such. It is simply not right for a carrier trying to monopolize on technology previously created yet one that is blocked for benefit of the carrier. That is what has all of us up in arms….

      A complaint (Probably many of them, by this point) has already been filed with the FCC, and the FTC. This action by individual carriers limiting End User Experience has to come to an end, and hopefully, the information I have passed onto Kellex, who then passed onto all of us, along with 6 other Android News sites, will assist in giving the end user the most enjoyable experience with minimal limitations.

  • Rick

    Google should buy Sprint, or T-Mobile, roll out 4G quickly, and tell Verizon to….. well I can’t politely say what they should tell Verizon to do here in a public forum.
    I bought a Samsung Galaxy “Nexus” (I use the term “Nexus” lightly) and it came preloaded with Verizon bloatware… and it was delayed for over a month, because of Verizon’s insistence that Google remove Google Wallet from their “Nexus” device.
    I’d love to see a Google Wireless provider, almost as much as I’d like to see Verizon pay for being so “Anti-competitive” and heavy handed.
    If another provider ever gets comparable coverage, all the ill-will Verizon has been building up with its customers through tactics like this, is going come back and bite them hard.

  • MKader17

    This is a great reason for Google to drop a HUGE lawsuit on Verizon for practicing a monopoly and refusing other services to promote something else they are involved with. You don’t have to worry about Verizon dropping Android as Verizon needs them just as much now.

  • crookedview

    I’d stick with the former.

  • Oh… Here’s another interesting piece of information contained in the official response to the FCC that states that Verizon doesn’t block users from downloading their app from the Google Play store….. That statement, is Faux as well…. Take a look at the screenshot I posted in reference to trying to download Google Wallet from the Google Play Store, via Google Chrome… Notice that in each of my devices, the app is unavailable for download as it’s “Incompatible with any of my devices” Now if Verizon wasn’t blocking the application, wouldn’t we be able to download it from the Play Store, WITHOUT the need to side load the app….. Lie Number 2 to the FCC on Verizon’s part…

  • DaRkL3AD3R

    F*** you Verizon.

  • jaxxmjd

    Definition of hypocrisy.

  • dsass600


  • feztheforeigner

    Yeah Verizon still sucks but my question is what in the heck is a “secure element”?

  • bkosh84

    Basically it comes down to this… AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile want something that will make them money.. Google Wallet will not make them money because they don’t have control over it, but the Isis thing will.. So they blocked Google Wallet..

  • Finally got it to work… here’s the isis email… note the last paragraph…

    • DC_Guy

      Well now this is very interesting. I wonder if it will work with the Note 2…

      • I’m not sure…I would have liked to get the Note II because I was in the market for a tablet, and a phone, so I figured the Note II would be the best option for me…. Little did I know it would take 2 months for them to release it to the network…. I merely had to “settle” for the S3, and in doing so, I’ve been a little preoccupied with all the nonsense we’ve been getting from the S3’s end… I’ll definitely have to check it out though, and see what I can’t find out…

        • DC_Guy

          I actually went to the Verizon page right after I left that comment and they do have the Note 2 listed under “Isis Ready Phones”.

          • Gotcha… Yeah, I got caught up… I thought it was listed, but I wasn’t sure… What you need to do, is call Verizon Customer Service, and have them send you out a new SIM, if you decide… I will give you fair warning, however, ISIS Sucks!!! Only like 2 cards are accepted, and they’re the crap cards … Discover, and Am. Express, I believe….. Visa and MasterCard have joined in the Google Wallet parade, and as of right now, only Austin, and Salt Lake City are the only two cities even thinking of utilizing the ISIS crap…. I only got my sim so I’d be ready, if and when it ever rolled out cross country…. And so I could check it out… I was Not impressed…. even more so when I noticed the whole Secure Element thing…. Go back through and look at my screenshots I’ve posted… There’s a couple of them, and I promise you’ll be as unhappy as the rest of us for a couple different reasons… 1. the Whole Secure Element feature, and Two, because despite writing the FCC a letter stating that Wallet isn’t blocked, there’s a s.s. I posted stating the opposite….

          • DC_Guy

            Ha I’m just going to start carrying around my Nexus 7 to pay for things. Ok, not really but geez Verizon is making this so unnecessarily difficult.

  • Grabber

    And this is exactly why I HATE Verizon and leaving as soon as my contract is up. I am tired of paying companies, that feel they can do whatever they want. It is very sad that companies like Verizon have gotten away from providing a service that consumers ask for, and instead offer what is only beneficial to their bottom dollar. I understand that it is a business but to force consumers into situations like this is a shame. Hey Verizon, if you are listening (I know they are not) F-U and your shady privacy policies! F-U and your lack of updates to my G-Nex! F-U and your Isis wallet that I will never use, EVER! That is all

  • Jeremy Martin

    All more free but limited data. Unlimited data, large LTE footprint, and vast cell coverage is why i stay with Verizon. It is not for the support.

    Before the trolls start saying “but how much data do you actually use? ” and go from there…I am thinking about how things are moving towards the future which is mostly cloud based. Right now sure data is not used as much but in the future more things will be cloud based. I do not want a data limit when that day comes.

  • I agree with you on being free from your contracts, but for those of us that still have unlimited data on Verizon and want to keep it, we almost have no choice. Verizon by far has the best service and until someone can compete with reliability I won’t be going anywhere else. So yeah, they need to stop being ridiculous and just let the small amount of people that actually care use their phones how they want instead of going the Apple route and treating all of their customers like they’re idiots. They’ll never be able to stop the hacker community, but the fact that they go out of their way to try is mind boggling. Also, where would Verizon be if it wasn’t for the OG Droid in 2009?

  • warcaster

    They are probably talking about ARM’s TrustZone – that all ARM chips have. The assholes were just lying and pretending Wallet won’t work with that.

  • SamsungFTW

    I can actually see the risk, despite the fact that it is not being explained well. Google Wallet cannot be allowed to access the secure element **because** ISIS accesses it. In other words, for security reasons no app can access the secure element chip because the secure ISIS information is stored on it, and allowing a third party app to access it would allow third parties access to that secure information. So, if secure ISIS information is stored on the chip, no other app should be able to get that information.


    This makes the assumption that the customer has actually chosen to use ISIS. While I can see the benefit of making the chip accessible only to a solitary program for the purpose of security, there is no reason that program should have to be ISIS. There could be a system in place that allows the device to only install one app that accesses it, and an attempt to install a second secure app is installed, it prompts the user to choose to replace the prior one or not install it.

    Furthermore, any app has permissions. As long as those permissions are clearly stated prior to the installation of the app, it is no longer Verizon’s responsibility. If they wanted to be more vigilant, they could issue a separate disclaimer whenever an attempt is made to download or install an app that access that area of the device.

    It’s not that they can’t work around it, it’s that they don’t want to. And that’s the point. Overhead trumps customer satisfaction.

    Despite the fact that I have Google Wallet working beautifully on my rooted Verizon Galaxy S III, this is the single most influential reason on my decision to drop Verizon when my contract is up. And if Google Wireless is open before that happens, I will drop them BEFORE my contract is up.

  • SamsungFTW

    Honestly, this comes as no surprise whatsoever. Verizon can say they are doing it to protect their customers, or solve world hunger, or come up with a cure for ****ing cancer, but we all know that there is no coincidence that the three carriers that block it are the three carriers that have invested in ISIS. Apparently a $1.25 million fine for monopolistically blocking apps is not enough. Let’s see how deep their pockets go, and how much they are willing to give up to try to manipulate the general public.

  • Tim Swann

    with ISIS now available, Verizon’s blocking of Google Wallet on any hardware capable devices would be in direct violation of Net Neutrality Laws.

  • The FCC has recommended that anyone having issues with this new development put their grievances into writing and mail them to the following places:

    Federal Communications Commission
    Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau
    Consumer Complaints
    445 12th Street SW
    Washington, D.C. 20554

    Federal Trade Commission
    600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
    Washington, D.C. 20580

    Let’s get a letter writing campaign started! Somebody with a law degree should put together a form letter outlining the complaint and give it to Kellen, who can provide it to anyone wanting to mail it into the FCC and FTC. We can make Verizon answer to the people!

  • On the phone with the FCC. Their representative believes that this issue now might be better handled by the Federal Trade Commission, since it could constitute an anti-trust violation.

    • You’d better be an attorney, or they’ll just blow you off.

  • npompei

    I have Google Wallet installed on my S3. Used it last night for the first time. Works great. I hope Verizon installs mobile payment things in their store so I can use Google Wallet just to buy something in front of them!

    • Jonathan Williams

      I’m never buying anything from a Verizon store again, except to do that lol

    • SamsungFTW

      LOL! Epic justice. I would not only do that, but when people ask what I just did, I would be like “Oh, that’s just Google Wallet, and it’s AMAZING! Oh, but you won’t get it with Verizon. Hey, why don’t you come down to the Sprint store with me?”

      And behind their back, as I walk away, flip the Verizon rep the bird.

  • Captain_Doug

    Like I needed another reason to leave Verizon…

  • C-Law

    Damn so Verizon just straight up lied to the FCC. I hope they get theirs soon and the FCC sees this and punishes vzw

  • They are slaves who fear to speak,
    For the fallen and the weak.

  • In fairness, Verizon did also claim that there was a process in place to get approval. They didn’t give any details about it, but just implied that it was possible to.

    • But how fair can the process be when the only thing to get approval is an in-house application, while an application from the company behind the phone’s OS can’t get approval?

  • Fitz

    @VWZSupport responded to me asking them.

    @fitzfitsahero Simply put…it’s ours! Here are a few more details about ISIS…tinyurl.com/car69fk ^CM

  • VZW = Big Fat Liars

  • James Wester

    Actually, this article is wrong. The SE used by Isis is not the same secure element that is embedded in phones from the manufacturer. It’s A secure element but it’s not THE secure element referred to by Isis. Instead, users must go to a branded carrier store from the three partners (T-mobile, AT&T and Verizon) to get an Isis chip. The wallet is ONLY available at this point through carrier stores in Salt Lake City and Austin.

    • James, incorrect incorrect and incorrect. I live in Fort Walton Beach Florida and was able to order a new sim through customer service for use with Isis. They have payment terminals for use in those locations, true, however, you can get them from customer service. Also, this post is about as correct as it states, read the second screenshot. The description of the secure element is on the device. THIRD, be so kind as to scroll up and view a copy of the email I received when setting up isis. It specifically states Isis must setup the secure element on your device…. NOT on the sim card, but on the device. I WIL be posting a screenshot of the email in its entirety once I get back to the house, buteverything stated refrences the devices secure elemen.

      • James Wester

        Let me clarify: Yes, Isis available anywhere you can get the SIM chip but surprised to hear they’r shipping them. Very interesting. And yes, once procured it works on any NFC-enabled POS terminal. (They limited trials to two cities actually to try and keep this very thing from happening!)

        But the SE they’re describing in the email IS that SIM chip, not an embedded SE. They’re setting it up on the SIM they’re sending you. It’s “on” the device (or “in”), but it’s not the SE that the Google Wallet would use (and which Verizon asked Google to deactivate in its phones at one point).

        (I’ll verify that with them, but I’ve asked them before and that’s the answer I’ve been given.)

        • They actually sent mine to me on Friday after we recieved the Jelly Bean OTA that gave the GS3 Isis compatibility. Like I said, I had to call becaise even the reps in store were clueless andhad no clue what I was talking about… They sent it two day FedEX (another provider of goods I can’t stand) and I got it yesterday which is when I started it up…. I ended up rooting my GS3 per XDA and when I went to try and figure Isis out this morning, thats when I received the screenshots Kellex posted.

          If that’s the case, I think Verizon rrrrreeeeaaaalllllyyyy needs to change their terminology because the way things read now, they’re misleadong the consumer which would spell lawsuit for them…

          • James Wester

            Not surprised to hear about your in-store experience. That’s been an issue for distribution.

            And I’m going to ask some NFC/SE folks who are much smarter than I am and make sure I’m right. You’ve got me doubting now because you’re right: that language is very confusing. And my gut says “if a carrier can do something to block a competitor, it will.”

            It may have to do with the reboot Google did on the wallet back in August. (Blatant self promotion: A story I did on it from then: http://www.mobilepaymentstoday.com/article/196393/Google-to-announce-Google-Wallet-reboot) Forgive me if you know all this, but now instead of holding payment credentials on the SE, the new Google Wallet holds a “prepaid account” that links to credentials in the cloud. When you tap your phone against the POS terminal it pushes the prepaid account to Google’s servers that then push the linked credit/debit account down the proper rails (visa, m/c, etc.) My thinking is that Verizon’s new rules won’t allow that. The credentials on the SE must be the payment account.

            Of course, they could have made that rule up to block GW. See the statement from my gut. 🙂

  • DanWazz

    Verizon doing something seedy and underhanded? I would have never guessed.

  • Mark Wilk

    This sums it up

  • Chris

    Not to defend Verizon, but this post leaves out something important. ISIS utilizes a secure element located on the SIM of the phone while Google Wallet utilizes a secure element on the phone. Both locations have their advantages, but they are not the same secure element.

    Its unlikely Google would gain anything from any legal or regulatory action at this point. By the time an investigation could occur and action be taken, the market share damage will already have been done. I believe Google is looking to bypass this by offering a physical card.

    As for ISIS, did they hire an Apple internal team to dev it? Why does it look like an iPhone app?

    • That’s what we are led to believe, however, look at my second screenshot and also to my copy of the email I received… It states nothing of the element on the sim card, rather the secure element on the device itself. This can be noted in the description of the secire element, as well as my email from isis stating “On the device” Not on the sim located in yo ur device, rather on the device itself.

  • DC_Guy

    Damn you Verizon! Damn you and your excellent service and 4G LTE coverage! I wish I could quit you but Sprint service is a joke and GSM service leaves a lot to be desired…constant dropped calls.

    • mgamerz

      Except that CDMA is a pos technology that’s going to be phased out?

      • DC_Guy

        It may be old but it is far from being POS technology. My Verizon service works FLAWLESSLY. The same cannot be said for AT&T or T-Mo.

        • ERIFNOMI

          That has less to do with the tech and more to do with the amount of spectrum, and the frequency of that spectrum, that Verizon has.

  • DanSan

    pot calling the kettle black. please, everyone report them to the FCC. write some nice letters to verizon and call up customer care.

  • I saw this, this is bull crap!

  • Sue Verizon! Shut it down!

    • DC_Guy

      They may be sued but they certainly will NOT be shut down. Let’s not get carried away here.

  • Stephen Clagett

    This BS is the exact reason I got an N4 and switched to pre-paid. Also, around DC, I’m getting “LTE like” speeds on t-mo’s network, so I really haven’t even missed that.

    • DC_Guy

      Have you had any issues with dropped calls or poor signal strength in buildings and such with T-Mo?

    • Tim242

      T-Mobile is part of Isis as well. They don’t support GW either.

  • Jim McClain

    well my google wallet has not worked for sometime

    • SamsungFTW

      Jim, check out some xda forums, depending on what device you have you may be able to fix that. It works great for me, and I used it this week. Message me if you need help (not that I will be able to help, but I will at least try).

  • Prox

    GNEX on T-mo, $50 bucks a month with unlimited HSPA+. Best decision I ever made in the 15 years of paying for a cell phone was single handly, leaving VZW.

    • Jim McClain

      HSPA aint 4g

      • zepfloyd

        Let’s not start that again…

        • Jim McClain

          just sayin, they want you to think its just as good and just as fast , but it aint

          • Prox

            I can’t argue about it anymore. I know what I have now and I know what I had with VZW for 15 years. Never looking back.

          • PhoenixPath

            The OP said nothing of the kind.

            …just sayin.

          • fixxmyhead


      • Prox

        I had a LTE Bionic and LTE GNEX on VZW. You have no idea.

      • Danrarbc

        T-Mobile’s can get pretty close though.

      • Daryel Villavicencio

        Download speeds don’t lie…

        Carriers (ahem, Verizon!) do.

      • Brendon Martin

        If you’re going to get technical, LTE isn’t 4G either.

        • Tim242

          LTE is a 4th gen tech. HSPA+ is an extension of 3G tech. Calling HSPA+;4G would be like Verizon going with EVDO Rev B and calling that 4G.

          • ERIFNOMI

            If you want to be like that, LTE is an extension of HSPA+. It’s the next step in the GSM family (3gpp).

            The original spec for 4G was 1Gbps while stationary, 100 Mbps while moving, among other things. LTE does not even come close to that.

      • Justin Georgeson

        T-mobile’s HSPA+ beat Verizon’s LTE in 11 markets


        The reality is that HSPA+ (the plus is important here, dual channel HSPA for a current max of 42 Mbps but 84 and 128 have been demonstrated) can compete with LTE for bandwidth. The latency and customer capacity is better with LTE though. But Verizon/AT&T/Sprint are using LTE, which doesn’t meat the ITU 4G spec. The LTE-Advanced spec does, and T-Mobile is going to roll out LTE-Advanced in 2013, leapfrogging the other carriers.

        • HTC1

          Are you nuts or something? t-Mob won’t beat anybody at anything. first off who cares if your HSPA+ is better than anybody in only 11 markets. What about the other million markets. And who cares if anything is faster if you can’t make a call!!!!!! it’s VZW or go home. I’m sick of everybody saying ‘their leaving VZ”. Go ahead. Whether you admit it or not (which all you people won’t that do change) you will see why VZ is 50 times better than them all in one day. For people that are pretty smart with phones, your all pretty stupid about networks. What the F good is a phone if you can’t make calls from it? And don’t come back with “my T-mob or AT&T gets great reception” if the 100 yard radius you never leave. You found the one football field it works in. Smarten up !!!!! I hate VX to but they are the best, PERIOD!!! Lieing won’t solve anything. Keep kidding yourselves.

          • Danrarbc

            11 out of the 30 they tested. 37% of the tested markets.

  • Are you serious? Why hasnt google reached out to the FCC for help on these stupid restrictions from carries… each consumer should have the freedom to choose what types of apps they want in their mobile device… after all is the consumer who is spending their money… infuriates me >:(

  • Havoc70

    Gee that figures, Verizon screwing everyone else. Asshats

  • zoobey

    “Once you have freed yourself from contracts and the subsidy cycle, your mobile experience will be so much more open and free.”

    So True! Walked away from grandfathered unlimited data on Dec 8. Livin Free ever since. Only regret is I waited so long.

    • Would you care to clarify? What service are you using now?

      • zoobey

        T-Mobile $30 100 minute Plan. Unlimited text and data 1st 5GB is at 4g Speeds.

    • Michael Quinlan

      I walked (ran) away from my unlimited data plan on July 3, and paid a $250 early termination fee to do it. I’m now very happy with my unlocked Galaxy Nexus on Straight Talk (AT&T), and my $75 per month savings has already paid for the early termination fee *and* my Galaxy Nexus. From here on out I’ve got an extra $75 per month in my pocket.

  • Silver Veloz

    Someone has some ‘splainin’ to do.

  • Clyde S. Dale

    as a former OG droid, current Vz GNex owner….both release day purchases, this wallet thing is the straw that broke the camels back. i could take slow updates and being fracked out of my unlimited data grandfathering, but this is just ridiculous dear verizon, you are a dumb pipe and that is all you will ever be. i don’t think this relationship is going to work out. it’s not me, it’s you. T-mobile (or Google/Dish mobile if it happens) at the end of 2013 for me.

    maybe you’ll love me when i fade to black

    • doober

      How did you get fracked out of unlimited data?

      • Danrarbc

        If you opt for an upgrade.

        • PhoenixPath

          On a release day GNex? Not likely…

        • crookedview

          Except that when the Galaxy Nexus was released they hadn’t revoked the unlimited data upgrade yet.

      • Clyde S. Dale

        like Danrarbc says. i could keep my unlimited if i want to pay $800ish dollars for my next phone. i even have a 15% bill discount from my work, and 4G rocks!! but sometimes you have to do what’s right. if we keep taking it, they’ll never change. Android is the proof that a lot can change in 3 years. support innovation, don’t block it.

        • Tyler Cameron

          I have never seen a Galaxy Nexus for $800 either. They’re $250-300 max. Any more than that and you’re doing it wrong.

    • SamsungFTW

      “It’s not me, its you.”
      Hell yeah. Well said. I feel the same way. I was muscled out of my unlimited data, and had to root to actually get the same Android version the rest of the world’s Galaxy S III’s are using, but that is just a matter of bad service. This Wallet thing is a matter of a company trying to make us puppets, and that **** has to go.

  • randompsychology

    I beg to differ.

    We *can* and *should* continue to complain about this injustice served up compliments of Verizon.

    This is at the very least unfair competition by using publicly licensed spectrum as a barrier/gateway to competing services. I think this could even be tied back to the Block C spectrum rules, in that Verizon is blocking us from using a Google service over the C Block band.

    Verizon should be in a lot of hot water over this. I, for one, plan to file yet another complaint with the FCC and/or FTC, and I might even just cite this article in that complaint.

    “Verizon. We’re the dirty scoundrels.”

    • miiike

      Don’t just write the FCC and FTC, write to your senators and representative also.

  • danofiveo

    Dish + Google (hopefully) couldn’t come soon enough.

  • Sirx

    Has someone presented this blatant hypocrisy to Verizon and the FCC for clarification? Are we not doing that? Just complaining, then…

    • Danrarbc

      Yes, please report this directly to the FCC – they will look at it because this is something they’re looking at right now.

      • I think FTC actually might needs to be involved also, due to unfair trade practice they are committing.

        Tl;dr they’re blocking out Google in attempt to monopolize the NFC payment system in US. Why wouldn’t this be unfair trade practice?

    • Greg Morgan

      I tweeted them the link to this article. Doubt it will really do anything.

      • Danrarbc

        It will go into the file on this complaint. They definitely acted on these complaints submitted a year ago with the AT&T–T-Mobile merger.

    • zepfloyd

      If you actually read the original letter they make mention that there is a process Google could work with Verizon to allow Wallet with the secure element, it’s just some vague, not-at-all detailed process. Verizon will only tell the FCC ISIS complied with that process and Google has not. So it’s not REALLY a hypocrisy, just huge scumbags all around.

      • How could ISIS comply while Google Wallet does not? Google produced the damn operating system and worked MUCH more closely with the manufacturers than Verizon did!!!!

        • zepfloyd

          Because in whatever goes on behind the magic curtain ISIS submitted to whatever Verizon Secure Element testing magic that exists, and Google did not. Obviously none of it really matters and I don’t agree with it, just explaining that’s how Verizon will spin it legally based upon what they put in the last letter.

          • Right, but interactions with the Secure Element do not constitute an exception from the requirements listed under 47 C.F.R. §27.16., since the Secure Element never directly interacts with the network. If it did interact directly with the network, Verizon would be able to fabricate some test data showing that they believe the Secure Element poses a threat to network integrity when engaged by Google Wallet, but since it does not, they don’t have an opportunity to squash this with hard evidence, fabricated or otherwise.

          • zepfloyd

            Ahh see you have the right idea but the wrong conclusion. 700 block rules don’t apply to begin with because, as you correctly say, the two never interact. You should wish they would as then they couldn’t legally restrict it. They don’t. Verizon’s spinning it as more a device by device issue because it’s a hardware feature, not a network issue, hence why you can download the app now, but not use it, and why they ‘claim’ in the letter if Google didn’t use the hardware element it would be fine. It’s the most asinine logic around.

          • I thought they couldn’t limit use of the device if it operates on the 700 block, regardless of whether or not the functions seeking to be limited interact with the 700 block frequencies?

          • zepfloyd

            The FCC jurisdiction begins and ends with the public airwaves and what happens over them. No more, no less. What happens with the device is not their area. Perfect example, Verizon phones still have the device bootloader locked and encrypted which is *cough*scumbag*cough* legal whether we like it or not. However the SIM slots are unlocked as mandated by the rules because…that directly deals with network / frequency access. Now the FCC hasn’t been afraid to reach into grey areas lately, but I wouldn’t count on it. What you REALLY have here is a clear FTC / DOJ anti-competitive issue.

          • WickedToby741

            More likely because Verizon is a shareholder in ISIS. I’m sure Verizon would be glad to allow Google Wallet on their phones if they split the profit. It’s no different than Apple’s App Store policies. Our network, our rules. You share the profit or you don’t play on our playground. It’s anticompetitive and harmful to consumers, but hey, at least it helps Verizon’s bottom line!

          • zepfloyd

            Absolutely, it’s a great case for the FTC and Dept of Justice for anti-competition / anti-trust behavior, all this energy at the FCC is just not going to the right place I’m afraid.

    • miiike

      Not just the FCC, write to your local Senator and Representative.

      • sk3litor

        And call the police

        • SamsungFTW

          I called Ghostbusters…

  • AJ Myrick

    At this point, the FCC really does need to get involved. This is wrong on so many levels.

  • scorchedsky

    Wait – “the Isis Wallet will not operate on phones where unusual root access privileges have been set” ? Does this mean Isis will not run on rooted phones? Can anyone confirm? Just another reason Isis is gonna be DOA, everyone with a GS3 should just check XDA for the WalletInstaller app


    • Scorchedsky, I am the one that presented this to Kellex, and let me begin by saying… I have already filed a complaint early this morning with the FCC. I can also confirm that yes, the Isis mobile wallet doesn’t work on phones with root access. Also, when setting up Isis mobile wallet the confirmation email you get specifically states… “Isis needs to set up the secure element on your device” Yep… the same one they block for Google Wallet.

      • Dragonetti Surprise

        Any chance of posting a screenshot of that excerpt? The more ammunition against Verizon and their hypocritical, anti-competitive resolve, the better.

        Quite sick of this tomfoolery from this carrier and I’m seriously considering filing my complaint to the FTC, paying my ETF and GTFO of dodge.

    • WCDave

      I was wondering the exact same thing. Wallet worked with root, I’m wondering if this will too. Although its annoying they block Wallet, I’d like to be able to use SOME NFC payment option if I can…

  • mog386

    Scumbag Verizon.

  • Greg Morgan

    all the more reason for Google Wireless to hurry up and get here!

    • Nex__

      I really hope its true, and not just an idea they were toying with

      • Greg Morgan

        Same here. if they introduce it, i’m jumping ship as soon as possible.

        • If it holds true by the end of next year that will be just in time for me b/c my contract will end by then.

          • Nex__

            Where’s Kellex? We need info. Last I read it suppose to be data only and use VOIP.

          • John Burke

            As long as it supports Google Voice…

    • moelsen8

      i really hope if that works out they do like straight talk and utilize both at&t and t-mo networks. t-mobile’s coverage is fast and awesome where i live, but as soon as i leave the area, my phone becomes a paperweight, it just blows outside of the metro areas, completely unusable. i really would’ve liked that $30 unlimited plan to work out, but i had to go with an at&t sim on ST.

    • Tony Byatt

      Talk about the ultimate dream…Stocks for the big 4 would plummet…

      • Go Hawkeyes

        And GOOG would go up! I’ve already rode GOOG for over 30% rise this year, I wouldn’t mind another 30% or more in the next year or two.

      • WickedToby741

        I doubt it. The capital and spectrum required to deploy a truly competitive nationwide network are both massive and not likely something that Google or anyone else could complete secretly or in a short time. Expect one of a few scenarios if the mythical Google Wireless comes to exist:

        – It will be a limited “nationwide” network with coverage likely worse than T-Mobile’s and limited to major cities at least for the first few years.

        – It will begin with limited availability in one or a few cities like Google Fiber (maybe even in conjunction with Fiber) and rely on roaming agreements to be considered nationwide.

        – It will be some form of MVNO, possibly data only and relying on Google Voice for talk and text.

        Either way, I wouldn’t get your hopes up for a network that can seriously challenge even T-Mobile or Sprint let alone Verizon or AT&T. Our best hope would be an MVNO riding on T-Mobile or AT&T’s network (more likely T-Mobile) with unlimited data, terms specifically catered to Google Voice, a reasonable price, and maybe even a free Nexus 4 (similar to how Fiber customers get a free Nexus 7).

        • ChiefAllDay

          Didn’t I read something about Google intending to purchase T-Mobile?
          There are lots of ways to deploy a new carrier in the U.S. You sound like the people who said “There is no way anyone can compete with a Blackberry”…

        • Tony Byatt

          Nice essay, but it’s not that serious…

        • michael arazan

          Google Just sold off a part of Motorola for $3 billion dollars, I’m sure they will reinvest that money elsewhere, either Fiber or to partner with Dish for a wireless carrier

        • Sqube

          Or those talks with Dish Network could really mean something.

    • mgamerz

      Google Wave

  • Verizon owns FCC.

    • mustbepbs


      Brought to you by Verizon Wireless. It’s the network.


  • MotoRulz

    Verizon = pants on fire

  • benjamin forehand

    It would be nice to leave but then go to what? Tmobile with hardly any coverage outside of a major city, or maybe att with more coverage but slow data speeds? I’ll Pass.

    • Prox

      Give T-Mo six months. They have done little since the AT&T stalled all upgrade plans with the merger that failed. Massive changes in the past 3 months and even bigger ones next year.

    • Daryel Villavicencio

      Just remember the “slow data speeds” of Verizon’s 3G is atrocious when compared to the “3G” speeds of AT&T. I’m happy with the non-LTE GNex I have on AT&T. I regularly pull 6mbps on “3G”.

      • benjamin forehand

        Oh i was on a gsm nex too and i was happy with 7-9 on tmobile. But not as happy as 20+ on verizon.

  • zroid

    Liar Liar pants on fire. FTC should investigate this with Priority.

  • J Davis

    Verizon = Pinocchio

    • Geekout

      except Pinocchio became a good real boy.. Verizon is still a wooden lying cheatin’ doll

  • Nexus_FrEak

    I HATE VERIZON…. But Love them at the same time….

    • SamsungFTW

      Me too! Except for the love part…