Would you buy a Nexus 4 with LTE this year?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from Arizona
Published: October 15, 2013

As we march inexorably towards the end of October (we're halfway through, woohoo!), we inevitably move closer and closer to the announcement of the next Nexus smartphone. We've already seen the newest version of the Nexus 7, and thanks to its nice upgrade, we're expecting to see plenty of improvements across the board when it comes to the smartphone member of the Nexus family.

Granted, it helps that all of the rumors and leaks suggest that the Nexus 5 will bear a striking resemblance, at least when it comes to specs, to a previously released behemoth of a device: LG's G2. If it weren't for those rumors, many people would probably expect the next Nexus smartphone to have only moderate increases across the board compared to last year's model. Instead, we're expecting a powerhouse, with all of the bells and whistles, and all for a price tag that would make many people drool with excitement.

What if there's more?

I think ever since the Nexus One launched, there's always been a rumor that Google would launch multiple Nexus smartphones in a year. From different manufacturers each time, too. So, instead of seeing one Nexus phone, from Samsung, or LG, or whoever else, we'd actually see one from them, and another from, say, Motorola or Sony. It pops up at least once or twice, and it's persistent. Maybe one day, but it doesn't look like that year is going to be this year. At least, not entirely.

There's a new rumor that suggests Google is getting ready to right a wrong from last year, right alongside the launch of their newest Nexus-branded smartphone. That wrong? The lack of LTE in the Nexus 4. While the Nexus 4 was widely accepted, and relatively loved by reviewers, the most glaring of flaws was the lack of LTE-connectivity. This rumor, which is unsubstantiated, suggests Google is looking to change that this year.

It's an interesting move, especially considering there is still so much talk about what the Nexus 5 will cost. If you'll remember, the Nexus 4 launched at $299 for the 8GB model, and $349 for the 16GB variant. This year, the rumors suggest that the Nexus 5 will launch with 16GB and 32GB models, which many believe means that the prices will reflect that: $349 and $399, respectively.

That would make sense. Even at those prices, the device is drastically cheaper than many of its counterparts. And, if it is indeed based on the LG G2, it would be strikingly cheaper than its off-contract predecessor. But there are many out there who still believe Google is going to price the Nexus 5 just as they did the Nexus 4 at launch.

Let's face it, if the 16GB and 32GB Nexus 5 models cost $349 and $399 at launch, that would still be a steal, so to speak. But the question is: would a Nexus 4 LTE priced at $249 for the 8GB and $299 for the 16GB draw in more attention? Would it draw in any attention at all? The Nexus 4 was a great device last year, no doubt about that, but it's definitely a mid-range device this year. Would it sell any units when put up against the high-end Nexus 5, considering that particular device would have its own cheap price tag?

I imagine it would. People love to have options, and especially when those options are relatively cheap. An LTE-equipped Nexus 4, at prices lower than $350, would probably look pretty tempting for anyone who is just looking to replace a broken phone, buy a device for a friend or family member, or needs a back-up device.

What do you think? Would you consider buying a Nexus 4 LTE this year if Google were to launch one next to the Nexus 5? Do you think it would see any sales? Or would everyone pick up the Nexus 5 instead? Let me know!

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