Back in September, Nvidia launched the Tegra Note 7. It managed to come out at a time when a lot of people were looking for inexpensive tablets and delivered a fairly good level of performance, even though at a lower resolution than others out on the market (Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HDX). The strong point of the Tegra Note 7 was the fact that it came at the low price of $199 and made owning a fast tablet more affordable than ever before. However, it was Wi-Fi only while the Kindle Fire HDX and Nexus 7 came with LTE optional.
Well, today that all changes with the announcement of the Tegra Note 7 LTE, which adds Nvidia’s own Icera i500 LTE modem to the Tegra Note 7. This is officially the first product that uses the Icera i500 modem from Nvidia and actually should quiet some of Nvidia’s critics about their LTE position in the market. This new Tegra Note 7 LTE will be selling for $299, a solid $100 more than the Tegra Note 7. The problem with this is that it makes the tablet less affordable and reduces the likelihood that someone will get this tablet since the Nexus 7 LTE is only $50 more. The 50% price increase for LTE seems a bit ridiculous to me, but the fact that the tablet is already $199 from the get go is primarily the reason for this, even if it does seem ridiculous.
Other than that, Nvidia isn’t saying much beyond the launch date is expected in the second quarter and that users that cannot get LTE coverage in their area should still be able to get 3G coverage. The supported bands for LTE are as following:
LTE-US: LTE: 700/850/1700/1900/2600 (Bands 2,4,5,17,7)HSPA+: 850/1900/2100 (Bands 1,2,5) EDGE
LTE-EU: LTE: 800/1800/2600 (Bands 3,7,20) HSPA+: 850/900/1900/2100 (Bands 1,2,5,8) EDGE
3G: HSPA+: 850, 900, 1900, 2100 (Bands 1,2,5,8) EDGE +Voice
As you can tell, there’s no CDMA support, which means that you won’t be able to use this device on Verizon or Sprint’s networks, but you WILL be able to easily use this device on European and US LTE networks depending on the version you get. The support for 3G is also nice, but I’m not sure many will get this $100 upgrade for 3G service.