With its quad-core processor and high resolution display, the popular Google Nexus 7 is one impressive piece of kit. Together with its low price, the specs of the Nexus 7 propelled it to tech stardom. But that doesn’t mean all is perfect about the Asus-made 7-inch tablet, as some users complained about the lack of important features, such as an SD card slot or cellular connectivity.
At least one of those grievances should be appeased soon, according to Paul O’Brien from MoDaCo, who claims that a 3G version of the Nexus 7 is in the works. In a very summary posting, O’Brien informs us that the 3G-enabled Nexus 7 will be otherwise identical with the current models. The tip comes from a “very well placed insider”, who also revealed that Asus is currently ramping up the production for the new model.
The Nexus 7 3G might arrive in as little as six weeks, says O’Brien’s insider, but availability details and territories are still unknown.
For those of you who are not familiar with O’Brien, the blogger is a respected name in the mobile industry, establishing the popular MoDaCo forums and site back in 2002. While that doesn’t guarantee the accuracy of the news, it does add credence to an otherwise unverified account.
The absence of cellular connectivity on the Nexus 7 means that users are dependent on WiFi or phone tethering, which can prove problematic when travelling. Also, some carriers (especially North American ones) restrict or charge extra for phone tethering. Another nuisance of this workaround is the quick drainage of the phone battery, which is never good news on the road.
The inclusion of 3G (nothing about LTE connectivity yet) should be a welcomed addition for a large number of customers. We don’t have any word on the pricing of the Nexus 7 3G, but a baseband chip costs about $8-$10. Adding the manufacturing cost and other factors, we can speculate that the Nexus 3G will cost about $20-$30 extra over the base version.
The news will certainly make some happy, while others will feel a bout of buyer’s remorse for getting the WiFi-only version before the new 3G version is out. Which group do you fall into?