Thursday, April 4, 2013

Will we ever see a Google Nexus 4 LTE?

When the Google Nexus 4 was announced last October 2012, one bit of news which was surprising is that it would not come with LTE. The low US$299 to US$349 price, was enough to quell any disappointment  It was a mid-level phone, in terms of display, camera and wireless connectivity, with the latest processor and graphics chip in the market. The cutting edge processor inside would guarantee that the phone remained a competent platform for the two years or so Google plans to support it.

Now the Qualcomm APQ8064 Snapdragon chipset inside the Nexus 4 does have a system-on-chip modem inside. The official reason given for now making the Nexus 4 an LTE device was to cut on cost. According to LG, which manufactures the Nexus 4, a signal amplifier and filter was not provided with this phone, and that is where costs were cut.

My own opinion on this, was the Nexus 4 LTE capability was castrated so as not to compete with LG's own Optimus G, the Samsung Galaxy S III, HTC One XL and the other flagship phones of Google's OEM manufacturers.

Now, the Nexus 4 is almost six months old, cost of manufacture have gone down, and a new generation of Android flagship phones are on the way. Might it be time to give the Nexus 4 a mid-life upgrade?

Personally, I would like my next phone to be a Nexus. But with my contract up in June, I am sure will not wait till the end of a year for the next Nexus phone to get here. A LTE version of the Nexus 4 would be the kind of thing that would make me willing to forego the awesome camera and blistering speed of the Samsung Galaxy S4. True, such a device would appeal to a small market, but it is that market which contributes to Android development.

The Nexus 4 is the geeks phone, and it just does not feel right without LTE.

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