What do we ask for? Consistency. What do we get from Consumer Cellular? More than a dozen ways to configure our Google Nexus 5 to their network. Unfortunately, many of those recommended settings don't work. Luckily, time is on our side. In the past 6 months Consumer Cellular and Nexus 5 owners have settled on APN settings that actually work properly on the Consumer Cellular network.
After spending a decade with Verizon Wireless and the last four years as a Motorola Droid user, I decided to try something different. For the past six months, I've been an owner of the new Google Nexus 5 running on the no contract AT&T MVNO, Consumer Cellular. While there are plenty of reviews available about the Nexus 5 and Consumer Cellular, there isn't a whole lot of verified information how to setup your Nexus 5 on Consumer Cellular.
Below is the process and settings it took for me to get my Nexus 5 to work on the Consumer Cellular network. These instructions assumes you are running Android 4.4 (Kit Kat) and that you already have a SIM card from Consumer Cellular. Recently, I have also used the same settings on my wife's Moto X. Everything works on both the Nexus 5 and Moto X as expected and I've verified that these settings work well connecting you up to 4G HSPA+ and LTE on the Consumer Cellular network.
The first thing you will need to do is to configure your settings for Consumer Cellular's APN. An Access Point Name (APN) is the name of a gateway between a GPRS, 3G or 4G mobile network and your cell phone. Without these settings, you won't have an Internet connection. While Consumer Cellular should be able to give you these settings, it will save some time if you've already have these settings entered into your phone.
1) On your Nexus 5, go to Settings > More... > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names.
2) Add a new APN by selecting the + button. You should have a screen available to "Edit access point".
3) Enter the appropriate information. The following is what Consumer Cellular provided me:
NAME: Consumer Cellular
Proxy: <Not set>
Username: <Not set>
Password: <Not set>
MMSC proxy: proxy.mobile.att.net
MMS port: 80
Authentication type: PAP (some have PAP or CHAP and reported no issues)
APN type: default,mms,supl,agps,fota
APN protocol: IPv4
APN roaming protocol: IPv4
MVNO type: None
Some history with regards to the above settings: In February 2014, Consumer Cellular began giving customers with LTE enabled phones new settings. Our readers have confirmed those settings work on 3G, 4G (HPSA, HPSA+), and 4G LTE. I've confirmed that these settings work on both the Nexus 5 and Moto X. In April 2014, I called Consumer Cellular and found they had tweaked the settings a little more which are included above. I have confirmed the above settings do indeed work for my phone.
While you can setup an account with Consumer Cellular though their website, I found I still had to give Consumer Cellular a call so before my phone could access their network. More than likely, they will need your phones identification number also known as the International Mobile Station Equipment Identity (IMEI). This number should be found on the box your Nexus 5 came with. The number can also be displayed within your Nexus 5:
Settings > About phone > Status > IMEI.
If your Nexus 5 doesn't work with the above settings, it may be that Consumer Cellular either has a setting or configuration they need to change on their end . I know when I had issues accessing LTE that it took Consumer Cellular a few clicks on their end and a reboot of my phone to get everything working properly. If everything checks out with your settings and Consumer Cellular you can try some of the older settings we've recommended work for you. You may also need to consider that you have a defective phone and need to call Google for a replacement phone.
For the average customer, keeping around the old APN settings was causing confusion of which settings to use on Consumer Cellular for your Nexus 5. However, I definitely understand that if you can't get your above phone to work with these latest settings you might want to try some of the older settings that I and other readers have verified to work or partially work for Consumer Cellular. Luckily for you I've archived the contents of the original article on Page 2.
Updated 12/8/2013: Comments providing additional information prompted me to include my configuration (verified to work with SSM and MMS). Additional changes in the article provided by comments and other sources but not yet verified by me personally.
Updated 12/27/2013: We have confirmed that the same settings work for Motorola's Moto X running on Android 4.4.
Updated 1/21/2014: From comments and trial, updated the MMS Proxy with "Diane's setting". Sometimes the proxy server pings a different IP number which means you want to use the "name" and not the "numbers". The setting for Proxy likely needs to be changed in the same manner too, but I haven't fully tested this yet.
Updated 1/26/2014: Corrected the typo in our recommendation for MMS Proxy. Also, we have noted and "Stephen" has confirmed that we likely need to leave Proxy not set. Not setting a value for Proxy actually is recommended on the Consumer Cellular Phone Support pages under "Selected Subtopic: Non-Consumer Cellular Phones". Not clear why the support people at CC reached by phone do not follow this recommendation.
Updated 2/16/2014: Thanks to "D Kenebek" and others we have new settings that may be needed to properly access the 4G LTE network provided by Consumer Cellular via AT&T.
Updated 5/3/2013: My phone wasn't accessing the 4G LTE network by Consumer Cellular via AT&T so I called Consumer Cellular again. So they gave me the latest APN settings and asked for confirmation of my phone's IMEI number. At this time I've found that "everything works" with my Nexus 5 on Consumer Cellular.Back to top
Bryan Ruby is the owner and editor for CMS Report. He founded CMSReport.com in 2006 on the belief that information technologists, website owners, and web developers desired visiting sites where they could learn about content management systems without the sales pitch. Besides this site, you can follow Bryan at Google+ and Twitter.