Verizon requires any OEM that sells unlocked devices with support for its LTE 4G network to apply for certification. When OnePlus began selling the 8 and 8 Pro from its online store in the US on April 29 – neither of these phones were officially supported on Verizon’s network. OnePlus initially issued a statement prior to the 8 and 8 Pro’s launch that it would not be compatible with Verizon until possibly June.
In a turn of events, effective immediately, US unlocked variants of the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro can be activated on Verizon’s LTE network. The news was brought by Verizon Corporate PR Manager, George Koroneos via Twitter.
To activate your new OnePlus 8 phone on an existing Verizon account, simply go to our BYOD website, login and then enter your IMEI and then follow the prompts. https://t.co/A8QkSElYR8— George Koroneos 🗿🍹 (@GLKCreative) May 4, 2020
Koroneos recommends that Verizon customers go to the Verizon BYOD (Bring your own device) website, log in, and enter the device’s IMEI number. Simply popping your SIM card into the phone is not recommended and doing so may limit the full activation of features on Verizon’s network.
Real Talk: Please don't swap your SIM when you get your new unlocked OnePlus 8 and call it a day. If you do that, you might not enable all the phone's features. Instead, follow all the steps above to ensure the best possible experience on @Verizon. pic.twitter.com/VoJ5J1gJGh— George Koroneos 🗿🍹 (@GLKCreative) May 4, 2020
We should also remind you that neither unlocked version of the 8 or 8 Pro is compatible with Verizon’s mmWave 5G network. Only the OnePlus 8 (non-Pro) sold directly from Verizon will support 5G on the carrier.
Verizon was once a CDMA carrier, which meant it wasn’t compatible with any GSM unlocked device that you could simply pop a SIM into. Verizon required devices to have CDMA hardware that would specifically support Verizon. Once 4G LTE became the standard and the carrier’s 3G-CDMA network was phased out, Verizon stuck with the notion of only allowing certain devices to work on its network.