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Galaxy Nexus and Original RAZR Owners, What are You Upgrading to?

verizon galaxy nexus

Can you believe that it has been almost two years since Verizon partnered up with Google to release the Galaxy Nexus and Motorola to re-vive the RAZR line? That period of time in late 2011 was easily one of the most exciting in the history of this site and Android in general. For months, we talked about both (some Rezound talk too), with the Galaxy Nexus (or G-Nex as we dubbed it) eventually becoming the phone of choice for many who were upgrading from the original DROID, thanks to stock Android, the “Nexus” brand attached to it, and the hope that updates would be often and timely. But that doesn’t mean that the RAZR (MAXX in particular) wasn’t equally as popular. Verizon threw everything they had at these new DROID phones, showing off their kevlar, new version of Blur, and massive battery life.

But now that we are two years out from all of that hypebeasting, we know that there are some upgrades on the horizon. If you purchased any phone during the end of 2011, you are likely due. With unlimited data being taken away and unattractive tiered or shared plans taking their place, you have a big choice to make. Do you take an upgrade and lose your unlimited data (could try this trick to keep it)? Do you buy at full retail to avoid a contract and keep your current plan? Or do you pack up and leave Verizon for more open pastures? 

There are more than a few amazing phones out there to be had, most of which we have reviewed. The Moto X is probably our in-house favorite of the moment, but the G2 and Galaxy Note 3 are easily as good. The Galaxy S4 is still one of the top three or four phones of the year, plus the HTC One and new DROID family are no slouches. I’m not sure that you can make a bad decision on a phone at this point.

But what if you want the new Nexus? Well, you would have to leave Verizon in order to use it. But if you leave Verizon, where do you go? Prepaid? AT&T or T-Mobile (we wouldn’t recommend Sprint)? We’ll have a post this week that details some of your prepaid options, including a few of the new ones like Aio.

We have had a number of readers ask for our opinions on all of this, but truthfully, we think the community as a whole can help you make a decision much better than we as a few individuals can. So what we’d like to do is have you take to the comments and tell us what your plan is if you have an upgrade on the horizon. Are you sticking with Big Red (or your current carrier)? If so, are you using an upgrade or buying at full retail? Which phone are you targeting? Are you leaving for another carrier? If so, which one? Going prepaid? Going Nexus? Why? We want it all.

Galaxy Nexus (other future upgrades) owners, what are your plans?

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  • Redwan Huq

    Leaving VZW but also taking a hammer to my Galaxy Nexus. I have never owned a phone that aged so poorly and had so many failed promises. Now it’s so laggy that I only use the core apps now. I don’t even want to sell it because no one should have to use such a horrid device.

  • Justin Moore

    I bought the Droid MAXX Developer Edition (almost got the Moto X) at full price. Yes, it was costly, but not as costly as losing Unlimited and the other networks are not nearly good enough for my needs yet. I’d love to go to T-Mo, but the allure of the new MAXX and their lingering second-tier status is a dealbreaker on that front.

    • Wyatt Neal

      I’ve been on VZW for nearly 3 years here in Cincinnati and I feel like they are over subscribing their network at this point. My friends on T-mo and AT&T are getting way better service on average than I am, way better speed … and they aren’t tied to someone who’s idea of customer support is a pillow to smother the complainers with. Sure I’ll be giving up unlimited data, but I know I can get that same unlimited from 1 of a ton of GSM providers that I can take my phone to whoever I want. So long Verzion, so long half-assed Nexus experience.

  • Scottie C.

    Nexus 5!! And thru Google, so I can keep my grandfathered unlimited everything plan!

  • Donald Krebs

    Somehow I got suckered into a 3 year contract with Sprint to get my Galaxy Nexus. I thought I was promised timely updates, but, oh, well. So, my upgrade won’t be until next summer. I’m thinking that’s OK though since several of the devices I am interested in will have matured and updated by then. Right now, my first choice is Moto X.
    I have been toying with the idea of a phablet. My old HP TouchPad with Android JellyBean 10 is seldom more than arms length away. Most of my use is data but I can’t totally give up having a phone.

  • AlaskanAlien

    Im in the military and im stationed in Alaska… so needless to say if you dont have Verizon as much as I they screw me someway on every bill… I have to take it otherwise I might as well not have a phone…

  • Paul Tobeck

    I’m not due for an upgrade until March. Had a Rezound until the ICS update turned it into a steaming pile of ****, then I picked up a used Gnex. I like it, but you can really tell it’s limitations with only the 1Gb of RAM. It freezes/lags/reboots just enough to piss you off.
    I really have no other choice here for service, as AT&T is a year (at least) from catching up to Verizon today and no T-Mobile at all.
    I’m just really disappointed with Verizon’s phone selections. The Moto X and Droids are fine, but I’m not signing a 2 year deal on 9 month old phones, and I don’t think I can hold out until next August for the next generation. Sammy would really have to up their game and reduce their bloat for me to seriously consider the S5 (April?).
    Not a big LG fan (the G2 is just ridiculous), but I’d jump on a Nexus 5 if it were available.
    Was really hoping Sony would have cut a deal with VZW, because that Z1 is sweet.
    Oh well, a lot to be announced between now and March, so I’ll just have to see where it goes.

  • Roog

    Although I feel the G-Nex was only an “ok” phone (Verizon replaced mine twice due to unexplained electronic glitches, plus the processor and memory quickly proved lacking), I like having Android updates while I actually own a phone and I will go for the N5. I am amazed at the lack Android updates at Verizon and others – very disappointing. When I see the HTC One just recently receiving the 4.3 update that I received on my G-Nex months ago, I don’t get excited about the other great non-Nexus hardware out there. I’ll sacrifice a better network for a phone that (hopefully) receives timely updates.

  • Boles

    I’m planning on buying an unlocked phone and then migrating to T-Mobile and one of their bring your own phone plans. As to the phone, I don’t know — I won’t be changing phones for another couple of years. If I had to switch right now, then I would probably go with the Nexus 5. Verizon forced me to put a ROM on a Nexus phone [SMH].

  • Neil Fujiwara

    No love for the earlier adopters of the Razr line, Bionic–>Razr–>Razr Maxx, it really should have been just the Razr Maxx. I plan to get the Maxx. I have one line that is limited, so planning to the old switcheroo.

  • scotta27

    Longtime Verizon customer and advocate, day one G-Nex owner, and left VZW 2 months ago for Straight Talk in anticipation of Nexus 5. Sold my old VZW unlimited data plan for good cash money (smooth transaction BTW). Limping along on an old Windows POS for now, but enjoying bills of less than half what I paid before. I expected spottier service but that has improved, very frankly. Best mobile move I ever made.

    • JMonkeYJ

      Is that a Windows Mobile device? As apposed to the modern day Windows Phone devices? If so, that was what I used before Android, too….ahh memories…

  • willis

    I guess Ill be missing Verizon’s great coverage in my small home town. But I live in the big city, so . Nexus 5 here I come!

  • billyd

    My contract is up on 2 Jan 14. I’m just gonna let it roll month to month and buy a new phone somewhere else and just swap phones basically. No more 2 year contract hostage situations. I think I should be able to keep my unlimited this way according to chat with the VZW robot!!

  • John Molina

    I’m abandoning the Nexus line of finicky Asian devices for a good reason: ‘murica! No, but American jobs. Seriously.

  • alexkirkp

    I really want a waterproof phone on verizon. Since that doesn’t look like it is ever going to happen I am leaning towards a Moto X.

  • Dylan

    I’m torn over over what to do with my GNex and my grandfathered data plan. I’m teetering towards a G2 or a Maxx purely for the battery life. I don’t feel strongly enough for either that I can’t wait to see if the N5 is worth jumping ship for.

    On the other hand, they say you vote with your wallet. I would love nothing more to buy a reasonably priced phone outright, and pick a plan based on competitive data rates, starting with the TMobile $35 plan. 95% of the time I’m probably in a place I can get a TMobile signal (most of it probably 4G), but that 5% that I’m out of range is when it’s probably most helpful to have a signal. Getting weather, traffic, maps, making calls…are all pretty important when I’m on trips in the middle of nowhere.

    But if I (or people like myself) never make the jump then where is TMobile going to get the money to expand into those remote places?!

  • UndergroundWire

    For those planning to leave Verizon, hold off until December. Especially if you are an unlimited customer. Something is coming that may surprise you. According to my sources, Verizon is well aware of the number of customers leaving for TMobile. Stay tuned.

    • Droid 1967

      per sarge ?

      • UndergroundWire

        Just some info that I got from a friend. I am now on hold until December.

        • Droid 1967

          just screwing around 🙂 good to hear cant wait to see what it is. maybe 7 gigs for 90 bucks 🙂

    • B

      If I cant keep my unlimited, then not worth waiting.

      • UndergroundWire

        From what I am told, you will be able to keep it plus it will be cheaper. She’s been a good source for me in Verizon, she told me about the Edge program before the media got wind of it.

        Believe me, I am pissed (if this story pans out). I “Edged” up giving up my Unlimited for 8 GB ( I was averaging 13 GB per month). Part of me hopes this isn’t true because I would be screwed. LOL. But nonetheless, December is around the corner. And let’s face it, their service is really good.

        I can’t go to T-Mobile because I work in the Airport inside an office with a lot of stone and metal frames (converted hangar). Nothing penetrates the building here except for Verizon. Also, there is a Verizon 4G LTE Tower on the property so I have excellent reception.

        • B

          Thank you! Hopefully this is True. My 2 year is up in Dec.

  • i’ve decided to hold out and see how long VZW will let me hold on to my unlimited. Other carriers have no signal at my house nor my work. so it kinda makes the decision to stick with VZW easy for me. Going to get a 32GB motomaker Moto X when it becomes available on Nov 11 (per evleaks at least).

  • Geoffrey Landrum

    I get fine service from VZ. I also get a discount from work. I have an unlimited plan. TMobile or Sprint have a ways to go before they can offer me anything worthwhile. You want options, my fellow 10GB/month’ers? I’ve got options!

    1. Buy a new battery for my Gnex. I can’t subscribe to the notion that Googlerola has NOTHING planned for us. Verizon can’t afford to let us go. We likely consume data, and lots of it. Better to have us (the small minority, that we are) consuming our data with them and under paying than to let us escape where we may gladly pay less for less. No. Verizon would sooner give us free phones than see us go to AT&T.
    2. Get one of them there Nexus 7s with the LTeez’E. I hear it will work if you use an existing SIM card. I’ll just scoop up one of those bad boys and use it as a voice device. Again, I hear you can do it. I’m resourceful. I’ll find a way.

    It’s a dysfunctional relationship, Verizon and me. They want my business as much as I want theirs. No Nexus 5? Fine…. I can wait. I will wait. There WILL be a MotoNex, even if I have to build it myself from the discarded remains of old devices. It will be a true Frankenphone, forged from the innards of a Gnex and an OG Droid.

    I will name him OGG Drexus.

    No, really…. I’m sticking with Verizon to support my data habits.

    • joejoe5709

      I too hope Verizon has something in mind.

  • auglove3rd

    I still have unlimited data on Verizon, but T-Mobile’s coverage has caught up enough that I can justify paying $30 less a month, getting the Note 3 for zero down, and having my bill drop by $30 when I’m done paying the phone off. So long, Big Red.

  • You forgot to include, sticking with the POS phone I have because a new one is NOT worth $700+. I will stick with using my Droid Razr for just texting and calls on the go and use my N7 to do all the heavy lifting (gaming, web browsing, etc).


    Went from an OG Droid, Droid RAZR MAXX, Droid MAXX. I really wanted the moto X but I’m in love with BIG BATTERY and UNLIMITED data. After having 3 batteries on me for the OG Droid, my major tipping point is battery life.

  • Avinash

    nexus 5

  • Andy Pate

    I don’t think I’ll jump ship until Google finally has their own cell service. Vzw is kind of hard to beat with data speeds and constant reception.

  • Steve Mancia

    Leaving Verizon for the Nexus 5 on T-Mobile or AT&T. Haven’t decided

  • Russ

    I am on a shared plan, so I’ll be sticking with Verizon for the foreseeable future. Right now that leaves the Moto X or HTC One on my radar, and I’m leaning heavily toward Moto. If the Nexus 5 does hit VZW, I will have a much harder decision to make. But Moto has nearly stock Android, and the changes they have made are actually useful and very appealing to me. Plus, I have little hands and stubby thumbs, and the G-Nex is alreadya bit uncomfortable one handed so a bigger screen sounds more annoying than enticing. My tablet is for games and media, and my phone is much more utilitarian.

    • Zachary Wood

      It would be a miracle if the nexus 5 worked on Verizon. I’m hoping so too but probably not… :/

      • Russ

        Right, which is why I’m probably between the X and the One. But we don’t actually know yet that the Nexus won’t be on VZW.

  • joejoe5709

    Oh boy… Here we go. I knew there would come a day you’d ask that question. The golden million dollar question of the GNex faithful. Honestly… Unless you know something we don’t, this isn’t fair. Maybe I’m in blissful denial but it’s still too early when we still don’t even have an announcement. But… Here goes…

    I don’t think I’ll leave Verizon – Nexus or not. It pisses me off, sure. But I just can’t find justification to simply leave Verizon just because I want to be a crybaby over the unavailability of a single phone – even if that phone is easily the best phone of the year.

    I know I’m in the extreme minority but I think I’ll wait it out. My Gnex sucks and isn’t getting better but it’s doing alright and 4.4 might actually help. The LG G2 and Moto X are both incredible phones. But I’m not willing to “settle” either. They both feel like the consolation prize when there could be better things on the horizon.

    The Galaxy S5 will most definitely blow the G2 out of the water and that should be here sometime in the spring. I can wait the extra 4-6 months. Google is doing incredible things with Moto. Maybe soon we’ll finally have our unicorn Moto X-Phone and that could have relatively stock Nexus-like Android. And heck, VoLTE is very nearly upon us. Why not see what that brings? Maaaayyybe even a Nexus? Hmmm….

    I’m sorry but if no Nexus 5 then I want something worth my damn sorrow, my valuable monies, and two years being my daily tech device. And I’m not sure changing carriers or settling for something (just because my phone is two years old) is the answer.

    • JMonkeYJ

      I think it’s not about the availability of a single phone, it’s the continued lack of a series of top phones. One can be forgiven, but VZW has missed at least 3 top-tier phones in just the past year. That’s not a new MO for VZW, either, which is what gets so frustrating.

  • Jim Desmond

    My GNex is limping along with about 2-3 hours of battery and a ghosting and cracked screen. I really want the Nexus 5 but I really can’t leave Verizon. I work in basically a concrete and steel bunker with locked down WiFi. Verizon and AT&T have repeaters in the building but T-Mobil does not and has no signal in the building. Streaming music at my desk is the most important job my phone does so I have to have a signal.
    I am waiting for mid November to make a decision on a Moto Maker Moto X, HTC One or G2. I seem to change my mind on these three phones a few times a day with news of unlocking, rooting, work around dev support. Decisions, decisions!

  • brianem

    Thanks so much for posting this. I’m pretty resolved to staying with Verizon because of coverage and in-network calling, but I’m not sure, and otherwise have no idea what to buy (or not buy – its still a decent phone with roms).

  • Joe Paul

    Bought a Galaxy s4 on craigslist for $350 and then sold my mom’s rezound for $125 (I kept my gnex as a backup.)

  • BulletTooth_Tony

    I already left Verizon because of the Nexus debacle. Never again after that experience, and their sad LTE speeds.

  • I finally purchased a used S3 and put CM on it. The Gnex signal and battery issues became too much.

    I don’t expect to sign another wireless contract, ever. I expect T-Mobile will be my next carrier, though there may be some months where I swap out for an att sim.

    No unlimited data, locked boot loaders, no nexus devices…why bother?

  • sl249

    I’d love to say that I’m leaving Verizon but being a college freshman under a family plan doesn’t really leave with me many options. I’m grandfathered onto unlimited and I have the money for a nexus 5 but judging from all the leaks about the respective radios…things aren’t looking too good for people in my situation. My gnex barely lasts a few hours…I’m really hoping verizon brings a worthy alternative to the nexus 5 in the coming months.

    • SplashMTN

      I was in the same boat a couple of years ago. Finally getting off my parents contract next month. You don’t have to be stuck with your Gnex though. If you have $350 for a Nexus 5 you can get a pretty great upgrade from Craigslist with that, plus you can sell your Gnex for roughly $50-100 to help recuperate the costs.

      It may not net you a top of the line/cutting edge device, but you could definitely pick up a nice upgrade from the Gnex. Last week when I was checking lightly used S4’s and HTC One’s were going around $350-400. Definitely not a nexus experience, but neither one is too shabby either.

  • SplashMTN

    I’m really bummed about AIO getting shuttered. I was looking forward to trying them out (Plus their prices were pretty sweet). I’d like to get on T-Mobile but their coverage won’t work for me. Looks like I’ll be going with GoPhone. Unless, of course, you guys can tell me about some other good options.

    • Andromedo

      Where did you get the idea that AIO is shuttered? I just went on their website and they seemed willing to sell me a SIM.

      • SplashMTN

        AIO is getting shuttered I should have said. I’m still going to give them a shot to start, but I don’t know how long I’ll be able to stay on there.

        • Andromedo

          I hadn’t seen that, thanks!

          It almost sounds like they are just going to change the name. I can’t imagine it would make sense for AT&T to move you to a different physical network.

          FWIW, I am currently using the $60/Unlimited/2GB GoPhone plan and have been very happy with it. Buying refills from CallingMart, I usually pay about $55-57 for a $60 refill.

          • SplashMTN

            I just heard about it yesterday. And you’re right, I do believe that they will just end up changing the name to Cricket, but that could also bring in new pricing structures, etc.

            In my perception Cricket has such a negative brand image that it will be hard for me to stick with them if/when the do change the name.

  • Michael

    whats funny is that everyone who says they are leaving Verizon…won’t.

  • Anonymous

    You’re assuming I’m on Verizon.

  • JeremyRoenickDanceParty

    @Kellex Don’t forget Bionic users! Paid full price (after the price drop) for DROID Maxx to keep my VZW unlimited.

  • David Salsburg

    So-Long VZW! it’s been real. enjoying my new service with TMO on my kicka$$ new Black Samsung Galaxy Note 3.
    Not a fan of the Moto lineup. and coming from my GNEX i am used to Samsung.
    Whats really nice for all of us coming from the GNEX boat is the new hardware thats out will absolutely blow your mind. This thing just simply blows me away.

    and no contract to boot!

  • william

    I already bought a galaxy note 3. It’s nice, I like it, especially since I was able to root it so soon, which I was NOT expecting…

  • Travis Walls

    I was supposed to be eligible for an upgrade this month before they decided to rewrite the rules mid-contract, pushing me back to February. I couldn’t take it any longer with the GNex. 1 GB of RAM just isn’t enough for me, apparently, and it was all I could do to load an embedded video on a web page, or keep Lync running in the background for work. Used Verizon Edge to get a Moto X for $24 a month with nothing down, and I haven’t looked back (aside from hearing rumors about Motomaker coming to Big Red and finding out about the same-day shipping program they just started right after I ordered the week before).

    Of course, I’d love another Nexus device, but I have a feeling this is about as close as I’ll get while still on Verizon. It honestly isn’t much different either. It feels about as close to AOSP as I’d want, and it has nice and functional extras to boot. For not having the best specs, it completely destroys the GNex in pretty much every way I can think of. General performance and 3D are all buttery smooth and the benchmarks crush anything the GNex could put out. Screen is beautiful. Speaker is almost TOO loud. Cheap plastic actually feels nice on front and back, and the shape is the first I’ve loved since my trusty iPhone 3G. I feel like everything is balanced and well thought out with this phone, and I don’t care about the price because it isn’t just about the specs for me. If there is a downside, it is that I had to drop from 32 GB to 16 GB. So far I have about 2 GB left, so it is feeling a tad bit cramped, but I’m managing. The 50 GB of free Google Drive space is sweet of Googorola to offer, but most of my space is used by app installs.

    T-Mobile service is pretty bad where I live (borderline non-existent at my apartment). Sprint looks similar on their coverage map. AT&T was acceptable (had them for the four years prior to this contract), but, as much as I hate to admit it, Verizon is amazing here. I got 43 Mbps down and 12 Mbps up from my living room couch with 4G. My cable modem is feeling sad as I type that. Edge turns out to basically be a two-year loan with 0% interest. At least that’s how the paperwork turned out to be. As for unlimited data, I was late for that train, so I never had it, and it wasn’t a consideration during this upgrade.

    One last thing: the phone shipped from Verizon with the special ISIS SIM card already installed. Just thought it was interesting that I didn’t have to do anything extra. My friend just got an S4 on AT&T at the same time, and he didn’t get the special SIM. He’s going to have to visit the store to get one. I miss my Google Wallet dearly from before they killed it off, but I do love me some free Cokes (we got new ISIS-compatible vending machines at work).

  • hans wee

    i had a gnex, and got it the day it came out. though i guess i cant really answer this poll since i had an in between phone…. i switched to a razr m, and sold the gnex to a friend. and now i’ve left verizon for t-mobile and have a moto x.

  • Joe

    Upgraded to the G2 when Verizon had Unlimited DataGate 2013

  • MrWicket

    leaving Verizon for T-Mobile and the Nexus 4 is one of the best things I’ve done all year. However, make sure your other options are going to work for you before jumping the Verizon ship.

  • Rodster

    At this point I’m torn. Currently have a GNex with unlimited data, and thinking about paying full price for either G2, or Moto X Dev, or the Droid Maxx Dev. Leaning toward the Droid Maxx because I’m constantly on the road and in the sticks. Suggestions?

    • donkeykong85

      well i would not get a phone that has been out for a few months as the life cycle seems to be pretty short. just as an example the gnex is 1 year 10 months old and verizon has stopped updates at 4.2…so i would hold off on anything unless its about 1 month old.

  • JadedDJay

    i just made my decision and i am going to get a dummy line and transfer an upgrade to get the moto x to keep my unlimited on vzw. the main decision point came down to keeping unlimited and signing a contract vs buying retail for the option of switching services later. I like the moto-x. i think it is plenty. this is coming from a crack flasher on cm10.2 nightlies, there really isnt that much more i would absolutely need that the regular moto x cant provide, even with a locked boot loader. i can speculate all i want about the future with regards to future coverage on other networks, future updates, future motomaker…. but the fact is that my gnex is dead becuase i dropped it one too many times, the moto x is a great phone right now, and verizon has the best LTE coverage right now. those are two guarantees that i know.

  • AlexKCMO

    Until my G-Nex starts feeling laggy, I’ll stick with it. Just seeing the G2 got CM 10.2, I’d consider that. It’s REALLY hard for me to leave VZW and Unlimited Data. My work’s WiFi is pretty restricted and I would go nuts if I had to watch my data. All it takes is a trip away from home and a couple nights of Netflix for me to destroy my bill if I switch to a limited plan.

    I was considering T-Mo, but with them removing true Unlimited, they’re out. Sprint’s service is about as reliable as MetroPCS, so they’re not worth it at all. Once I get pushed off Unlimited, I’ll probably end up on T-Mo, but until then, I’m sticking it out with VZW.

    • donkeykong85

      yea my gnex is still not laggy running on 4.3. I will see what 4.4 has to bring. of course if the n5 comes to verizon i will jump on that.

  • Trevor

    My plan is Nexus 5 on ATT Prepaid ($60 with 2 geebees LTE, plus $10 per extra GB). I really want to get on the Nexus upgrade schedule of once per year. I love running Cyanogenmod, but I’ve found that it just has too many little (and sometimes big) bugs/issues on non-Nexus devices.

    • A.Miller

      So you’re using ATT Prepaid, not AIO or StraightTalk or any of that?

      • Trevor

        I’m not using it yet. Two more months on a Verizon contract to finish out. At that point I will most likely be moving to ATT Prepaid. 2-3GB of unthrottled LTE data is good enough for me.

  • Richard Giordano

    already upgraded from the DROID Bionic to the new and improved DROID MAXX on vzw using my upgrade hoping to stay on verizon for a long time.

  • whosinaname

    Bought note 3 full retal from verizon using device payment plan. Staying with vzw (I have 3 phones on unlimited data with deep discounts)
    Sales rep still tried to sell me phone on subsidy and loose my unlimited data. I did the math for him and explained I would be crazy to move to share everything. loving my rooted note 3.

  • someguy

    From Verizon to the beautiful Nexus 5…. if it ever comes out

  • Matthew Yourchisin

    How about a vote for those that upgraded a couple of weeks back during the “Glitch” 🙂

    • Trust-me-me-lawyer

      Glitched my GNEX for a Moto X

      • Matthew Yourchisin

        Glitched mine to a S4