Up until this point, if you wanted to get the 3G version of the Nexus 7 in the US, it appeared that AT&T was the only option. Now, however, Google has provided a T-Mobile version on the Play Store. This model comes pre-loaded with a T-Mo SIM. According to the tech specs, though, they're functionally identical. This will just save you the trouble if you prefer magenta over blue and orange, I suppose.


The price is exactly the same and even the radio bands are identical, so regardless of which unit you buy, you should be getting the same hardware. Except the SIM, of course. However, only AT&T offers the $100 subsidy if you buy with a contract. After all, T-Mobile allegedly isn't a fan of those subsidies, remember?

We've reached out Google to confirm that this model really will be the same hardware, as opposed to an HSPA+ 42 radio (which T-Mobile supports, but AT&T does not). We'll update this post when we hear back.


We've heard back from Google:

I can confirm the Nexus 7 TMO Sim in the Google Play store is HSPA+21.

There you have it. Functionally no different than the AT&T version. Only dissimilarity is what comes in the SIM slot.

Source: Play Store

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • Kenny O

    What kind of sim card does this take? Micro? Regular? Assuming it takes a micro sim like the Nexus 4, could I just put in the sim from my phone from time to time?

    • Robert Mahon

      Technically, yes, but TMobile have been funny with me when I've been juggling SIM cards and it needed a call to get things back to as they should be. For some reason, they don't like you moving sims from one device to another, even though you've paid for both devices from them, and sims.

      • Kenny O

        Cool, I was just curious.....I'm really not a fan of spending extra money on a tablet with any kind of cellular radio, IMO it's a waste of money when you can just tether a smart phone and get the same experience.

        • Kam Siu

          i've been on both side, and i agree with Kenny. With Extended Notification Setting App, it's just a flip of a switch to active the hotspot on my Nexus 4. And there's CableWifi network on long island, ny. not hard to get free internet .

          • Kenny O

            Exactly. And the Wifi Hotspot on my Nexus 4 does not seem to be a huge battery drain so I leave it on as much as I need to. Don't get me wrong, having the radio built in to the tablet is much, much easier and more convenient - I just don't think it's worth the inflated cost.

  • Khanh

    LTE in coming out.. I shall wait for a tablet that supports t-mobile's LTE

  • ruperto17

    If it has the same hardware (radio bands) as the original then technically this it will not be fully compatible with T-Mobile. T-Mobile's 3G/HSPA+ runs on a different band.. so this means that device will only work in areas where the network has been refarmed.. which is pretty spotty at the moment.

    • missinginput

      From play store specs
      3G (850, 900, 1700, 1900, 2100 MHz)
      HSPA+ 21
      Because it supports both 1700 and 2100 it will work on tmobiles 3g/4g network up to 21mbps

    • GazaIan

      Pentaband modems like the one in the Galaxy Nexus and the Nexus 4 is what is present here. Users will be able to use the device on both T-Mobile and AT&T and use their 4G HSPA 21 network speeds, though T-Mobile supports 42mbps as well.

  • David S.

    I ordered a micro SIM directly from T-Mobile ($1, IIRC) and have been using it in my Nexus 7, which came with an AT&T micro SIM. I don't understand why Google doesn't just send both cards with the device, instead of pretending like they're different inside. FYI, T-Mobile won't let you use a phone plan on a data-only device.