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Google Explains Lack of LTE in Nexus 4 Smartphone

Despite featuring a slew of enticing additions such as Android 4.2 and a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro 1.5GHz processor, the Nexus 4 doesn't feature LTE compatibility. Google has now explained why it was hesitant in integrating LTE support into the device.

According to Google's Senior Vice President of Mobile and Digital Content Andy Rubin, various LTE networks currently in use are hybrid networks, which still utilizes last generation networks.

"We certainly have a desire to offer devices on every carrier on the planet," Rubin said. "The tactical issue is GSM vs. LTE. A lot of the networks that have deployed LTE haven't scaled completely yet - they're hybrid networks. They'll do their old thing and they'll do LTE, which means the devices need both radios built into them. For now, we're gonna sit back and let those networks evolve."

Rubin also said there were manufacturing concerns to consider as well in terms of integrating LTE support into the Nexus 4.

"Two radios in a device right now certainly raises the cost, and diminishes battery life," he explained. "When we did the Galaxy Nexus with LTE we had to do just that, and it just wasn't a great user experience. It's possible to do it right, but that's not where we'll put our resources initially. Tactically, we want to make sure the devices are available for every network on the planet."

The Nexus 4 is priced extremely competitively, with the smartphone costing just $299 without contract. It'll launch in the United States and the UK among other regions come November 13.

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  • chuckydb
    I was scratching my head when they said there was no LTE,
    but looking at the price, I'll forgive them...
    hoooooly s!!!!t, I'm forgiving them for sure.
    Reply
  • jimmyjohnz
    Honestly, at $300, that is a legitimate excuse to not have 4g.
    Reply
  • acadia11
    Aiding lte would have raised cost 40 bucks, big deal, again this would have been smart idea 2 years ago but not today. Since inception wireless networks have been hybrid, sine unless you are starting a new wireless company all deployments are brownfield.
    Reply
  • classzero
    I think I will have to go with a Samsung, I don't like how they removed the sd card. I know it makes sense from a profit milking stand point, but this isn't an iOS device!
    Reply
  • wemakeourfuture
    8GB with no expandable storage, plus no LTE. Seriously 8GB, that's what 5.5 - 6 maybe after the OS and converting from 1GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes to 2^30 bytes as well. No wonder its so cheap, they really tarnish the "Nexus" brand with this.
    Reply
  • Cryio
    300$ is a great deal, unfortunately in my country (Romania) the phone will probably sell for about 700+ dolars. Like any othe high-end phone without a contract actually.

    Microsoft sold Nokia Lumia 900 with 100 dolars. Here prices were ranging between 415 and 600.
    Reply
  • killerclick
    The only explanation needed is $299. How much do people use LTE on their phones anyway? Google is smart to push knockdown prices on powerful off-contract Nexus devices. Carriers and OEMs are the ones most at fault for Android fragmentation, and seeing how many people in the developing world use smartphones as their primary internet devices, Google wants to get them early. If Nexus 4 is as good as Nexus 7, it's going to kick ass.
    Reply
  • You people are silly. So it doesn't have an SD card. I use to think the same thing about the iPhone. But after getting my hands on an Android tablet and realizing that while I had a 4 GB SD card I never really used it because all my music is on Google Music, I can watch video from Amazon or my network at home and I don't need 700,000 apps installed anyways I came to the conclusion that an SD card is about as useful as a thumb drive these days. With Google Drive and SkyDrive I have all the space I need to access any files I need. So in essence the lack of an SD card is a minor inconvenience when Android Bean can transfer files easily and instant upload uploads my pictures and videos to my G+ account automatically. What you should really be complaining about is the size of the internal storage. Whats up with no 64GB?

    As for LTE, its not like you are using your phone to download torrents or 5 GB files.
    Reply
  • killerclick
    Cryio300$ is a great deal, unfortunately in my country (Romania) the phone will probably sell for about 700+ dolars.
    So book a cheap flight/train/bus to someplace in Europe where prices are reasonable, buy a bunch of Nexus 4s and/or Nexus 10s and resell them just to cover your expenses.
    Reply
  • wemakeourfuture
    killerclickThe only explanation needed is $299. How much do people use LTE on their phones anyway? Google is smart to push knockdown prices on powerful off-contract Nexus devices. Carriers and OEMs are the ones most at fault for Android fragmentation, and seeing how many people in the developing world use smartphones as their primary internet devices, Google wants to get them early. If Nexus 4 is as good as Nexus 7, it's going to kick ass.
    It's like saying does a phone a few years ago need 3G, who uses it, 2G is ok. 3G is the past, old and antiquated. While we're at it, who needs a quad-core or a 1.5 Ghz? Why not just cheap out on there too to lower the cost.
    Reply