Well, here's a shockingly cool bit of news today. Previously we shared a report that an LTE chip was found in the Nexus 4 phone, but it was likely impossible to activate due to missing hardware. It appears the rumors of this hardware impossibility were greatly exaggerated. Apparently a crafty Canadian figured out how to enable LTE on his Google Nexus 4 smartphone. It turns out there are some limitations that are hardware specific, but enabling it is still possible under the right circumstances. Here's a quote with some of the details, and a video above showing off this awesome feat!
So why do you think that Google marketed this phone without LTE service? It seems like it would not have been too much harder to add enough to get it going on this device. Strange...We’ve shown you a video as a proof, and the thread on XDA-forums where the news first broke is full of people that managed to activate LTE on their Nexus 4. However, there are some caveats – it appears that only a specific LTE band is supported – Band 4 (also known as AWS). AWS includes spectrum in the 1710-1755 MHz band for uplink and 2110 to 2155 MHz for downlink.
AWS spectrum is currently used by several North American carriers:
- Bell (Canada)
- Rogers (Canada)
- Telus (Canada)
- AT&T (United States, in some markets)
- T-Mobile (United States, no LTE)
With that said, note that the XDA users that managed to enable LTE on their Nexus 4 are from Canada. But AT&T’s network uses the same bands like Bell and Rogers, so it’s very possible that LTE can be used at least in some parts of the States as well (Brian Klug from AnandTech says that, to his knowledge, AT&T has not deployed LTE on Band 4 in any market yet). Moreover, T-Mobile will use AWS spectrum to deploy its LTE network in 2013.
- Open the dialer.
- Type *#*#4636#*#* to enter the Testing menu
- In the Testing Menu, change the radio mode from GSM Only (it might be WCDMA Preferred also) to LTE.
- Some users reported that in order to enable LTE they needed to create a new APN.
In theory, the trick should work for some AT&T users as well, but we weren’t able to test this yet. AT&T uses different bands for different markets in the United States, so LTE might only work in some areas.
Source Nexus4Forum via Android Authority