LTE Network Extender Firmware Updates Kills Function


My Verizon LTE Network Extender (LNE) has worked perfectly more than a year attached to spouse's iPhone12 (post-paid) Verizon plan.  Additionally my Samsung A53 Twigby (owned by Verizon) connected seamlessly.   You can only have the LNE attached to a post-paid account (which is spouse's iPhone)

LNE worked flawlessly until the 3/15/2024 firmware upgrade.  On the phone for 1.6+ hours trying to figure out why neither phone would connect.  After too many re-boots, switching settings from 'Cell Type' 5G Auto to LTE, it would connect sometimes.  

BUT rep suggested that while home change settings to LTE (only) and when leaving home, switch to 5G Auto.  Not an acceptable solution.

LNE security was 'open', and tried 'closed'  by adding our numbers to access list.  iPhone works in both cases, my A53 NEVER connects to the LNE.  It seems that 'Big Verizon' (post-paid) has, with the firmware update, locked the LNE down to allow access to ONLY post-paid accounts.  While I understand that it's technically possible to restrict access, seems petty to do so.

Question:  Anyone else seeing this issue?  Will the LNE only connect to devices that are post-paid? 

Both phones used to work perfectly until the 3/15/2024 firmware update... now broken

PS:  I understand priority, QoS, networking, etc.  I know business and marketing.   Something I can't get past is that Big Verizon, Total by Verizon, Visible, Twigby, etc. all run on the network, so there is no technical limitation to add a LNE.  On any Verizon marketed network, why can't I pay $5 /mo to use the LNE?

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