Here’s the device many have been waiting for: the Google Nexus 7 + Mobile. A WiFi-only tablet is useful when you’re at home, at the office, or anywhere else there’s WiFi — but that leaves a lot of holes. We don’t have WiFi in our cars, at the beach, on the golf course, walking down the sidewalk, riding the train, and plenty of other places. To make it more complicated, even some places that do have WiFi have extra costs just to use. Airports and hotels are notorious for this. Rates range from $5 to as high as $19 a day in some places. This is 2012. That’s absurd.
Enter 3G / 4G-connected tablets. Think of it as BYOD: Bring Your Own Data. I wrote about the advantages of mobile-enabled tablets a couple weeks ago, but you can brush up on that quickly, here.
I owned a WiFi-only Nexus 7 for a short time, and enjoyed it. Yes, the Apple guy admits to liking an Android product. Hey, I can recognize something that works when I see it. It’s just not my personal preference. Part of that feeling was exactly this: it didn’t have a mobile data connection. That’s why I ordered this.
For those who prefer Android tablets, the Nexus 7 + Mobile is the way to go. I might even go as far as to say, the only way to go. The hardware is solid and so is the price. At $299 for a 32GB model with 3G / 4G, you can’t beat it. That gives you plenty of local storage on the device to save your music, movies and other digital content for offline use, plus a speedy connection for access to files in the cloud.
The Nexus 7 + Mobile works in the U.S. with AT&T’s HSPA+ network and it comes unlocked for use with other carriers globally. As for data plans, you have two options with AT&T. First, you can add it to your existing FamilyShare data plan and just pay an extra $10 a month to share the existing pool of data you already pay for. If you’re not on the FamilyShare plan, you can opt for one of the prepaid plans. There are three tiers: 250MB for $15/mo, 3GB for $30/mo, or 5GB for $50/mo. There’s no contract and you can start / stop your data plan at any time. It works everywhere AT&T has service (insert joke here).
The Nexus 7 + Mobile is available in the Google Play Store now, with shipping availability currently at 3-5 days.
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