Nexus 4 Tweak Allows LTE Activation On One Frequency, And It’s Good News

It may be a crazy day of Black Friday shopping around the country, but if can turn your attention away from door-buster deals for a minute, this just might interest you. It turns out those crafty boys from XDA Developers may have discovered a quick and easy way to activate LTE on the Nexus 4. As it turns out, the Nexus 4, which is by all accounts, an LTE-less device can actually run LTE on band 4, better known as AWS/1700/2100. The phone may lack a signal amplifier, but it can seemingly handle the connection on that one band.

This is great news for T-Mobile customers who will find the company’s LTE network running on those very bands sometime next year along Canadian carriers Bell, Rogers and Telus. AT&T does run 1700 in some areas, but it’s much less common than their current crop of 700MHz band 17 LTE market but the Nexus 4 appears to only run LTE on that one particular frequency.

Activating LTE appears to be performed through a rather easy set of steps, accessed by dialing *#*#4636#*#*. You’ll then tap on the preferred network option, selecting LTE or a mix of LTE, GSM and CDMA. The videos we’ve embedded below show that the device will attempt to connect to a LTE network, if one is available. Without any LTE markets to test on T-Mobile, I’ve been unable to set this up on my own and verify, but the two videos out of Canada below already do that for us.

If you’re on T-Mobile, the Nexus 4 just got a lot more attractive and perhaps a lot more future-proofed. Now you just have to find it in stock. AnandTech has the full technical breakdown evaluated through a series of tests below, so if you’re curious how all this works, it’s a worthwhile read.

AnandTech, XDA Developers

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  • Nate33po

    I can confirm this, the code is wrong though, it’s “*#*#4636#*#*” You get the whole technical menu including LTE bands. This is truly a superphone!, pentaband + LTE!!

  • ja5219

    I want this, Ugh just couldn’t catch it on stock. I wonder when it’ll be back on stock again.

  • nino13

    Does it mean anything that my gs3 now has LTE as one of the automatic options in network mode after the jelly bean update?

    • Todor Iliev

      nope, i have already checked it has only att lte frequncys this is for gs3

  • Mobilewolf789

    You know sometimes I criticize people for always relying on XDA to solve problems, whether its current or perceived issues for a phone yet to be released, not because they’re not good at what they do but because they are not hired by the company to be obligated to! Yet some readily drop their name as if they’re the official tech support required to solve your problems for you instead holding the OEMs who actually MADE product accountable and technically/ legally are suppose to be the responsible party.
    BUT…there are times like these when I am happy XDA developers bypass a company’s bull$!!! to get us what we want when we want it! I don’t have the phone yet but I still plan on getting it. I have come to love future proofing, which includes not having to read another rumor, from like every tech website , about so and so phone possibly getting the next android update soooooooo many months after its release (well possibly…maybe….”keep your fingers crossed!”), its sickening sometimes. Sorry to rant at the end like that but it’s my birthday today so I get to do what I want =)

    On a side note I was thinking this dormant LTE chip was somehow related to rumored plans of google launching its on cell phone network. That was before I learned of the bands, but I thought they would just activate the chip then.Was I the only one who thought that?

    • Happy birthday!

      • Mobilewolf789

        Thanks Dion!

  • GwapoAko



    Yay! Future proof’ed my Nexus 4 purchase… :)

  • Qbancelli

    The phone DOES NOT lack the amps.
    Stop spreading miss info

    • Y314K

      U’r both right.. It DOES NOT lack the amps for the 4th Band since it can use the same one it uses for UMTS HSPA+… But from what I’ve read it does lack the amps for the rest of the Bands (1, 3 , 6 , 7 … etc)

  • Qbancelli
  • Nick Cannon

    Wished this worked for Tmo Note 2

    • jay

      note 2 is lte ready

  • archerian

    looks like the guy at Android Central who claimed the N4 will never do LTE as it doesn’t have an LTE antenna has egg all over his face.

    • TrueStoryBro

      And by eggs you mean sh¡t…

  • slayde

    Sounds good, but I am already getting 15mb down on tmo in seattle

  • Jake

    Yeah after I updated, i get the LTE option too, does this mean its also future proof?

  • Thanks to this post, I finally have the Nexus 4. I was going to wait for the Play store to become avaiable again and save $150, but I knew a store here in Atlanta had 4 so I went and cop’d it. Yeah its $15 extra a month but since I changed to unlimited 4g, I saved, so I only end up paying $10 more a month for the next twenty months.

    If your in the Atlanta area and want this phone, as of when I got mine, there were three left in the store. Its in Conyers, I think its called Dogwood Dr. The only T-Mobile owned store out there.

    But yeah, this post finalized it all up. Im pretty sure I was going to get it, but now that I know its future LTE proof, there was no second guessing and $500 is worth it. Thanks Dave

    • souggie

      Me too bruh. I coughed up that down payment quick when I found out the store in austell had two left. And now that it’s future proof too, I’m too glad I grabbed it today

  • Mirad77

    Some people have to eat their words. I told some here that till Google or LG say that the LTE is useless then we just have to wait and see as anything would be speculations. Now here we go. It just keep getting better.

    • Mobilewolf789

      As I also was recalling someone else say “we’re well beyond something that can be achieved through the basic tenents of hacking and rooting” (uh oh who was that?..), I also had the pleasure of reading over your comment again. Gotta love it (funny how the process seems over uncomplicated).

      • Oh oh, that was me, me!! Hey, I’m happy to be wrong when it’s positive.

        • Mobilewolf789

          Although I don’t post much I’ve been an avid reader of your site for a pretty long time. I knew I could get this playful jab in there because I know your big enough to admit when your wrong. =)

        • First, thanks for posting and finally breaking down into troll-ville that is the comment section! Always happy to take some playful jabs!

        • Mirad77

          To you Sir, I say you are a man.

      • Mirad77

        Lol, that was a good one.

  • Makoute

    So I guess this means, this phone will be even harder to find now.

  • Fish

    But isn’t activating the LTE illegal since it didn’t go through the FCC with it?

    • Trevnerdio

      I’m sure it is blessed by the FCC, just you never see that stuff.

  • steveb944

    I HAVE to buy this now! GOOGLE TAKE MY MONEY!!

  • Good to know.

  • Y314K

    So at first I was worried about Band 4 LTE as it related to the TMobile & MetroPCS merger…. But after reading this :

    I am less worried as long as TMobile sticks to the 4th Band LTE plan they have now….

    Hope to hear Conan Kudo (ニール・ゴンパ) take on this soon…

  • niididdy

    Holy Cow! Good to know!! Good find…valuable piece of information.

  • Jeff Martinez

    If this can be activated on Tmos LTE network down the line than great but I’m already enjoying the speeds here in phoenix, esp with the 3G towers being active now, coverage in some areas are better now

  • Trevnerdio

    Yeah I can select LTE on my Galaxy S III with JB…but that doesn’t mean I have it…

    • IKR??

      U jelly?

      • Trevnerdio

        No…just misled :'(

  • Alan713

    LTE is useless on phones. on iPAD yes, phones hspa+ is enough.

    • Trevnerdio

      Negative, ghost rider.

  • UMA_Fan

    So does anyone know the disadvantages of having no power amplifier are? Will LTE not work practically? How likely is it that Google/T-Mobile will enable LTE support when their network is live?

    • Evaris

      It actually will work fine, it just uses the HSPA+ antenna / amp. And it may not ever be an “official” enabling, though who knows.

  • Trevnerdio

    For easy access to that menu, use the app Phone Info and select Device Information once you get into it.

  • Mobilewolf789

    You know as someone else had mentioned this phone will now be harder to find. I am really patient so I can get the best deal, but have y’all been to eBay? Sometimes I think, because google did not set a limit of devices per person, people are hoarding these phones to sell it off online as a profit! Shoot they were even doing it when the phone was available because people didn’t know any better I suppose.

  • superflysnooker

    im gonna get me a nexus 4 now with the lack of lte was kinda a draw back. ever since the note 2 came out with hspa+42 and lte was more bang for the dollar but the nexus 4 is even more bang for buck get update direct from google hspa+42 and now lte and more then half the price of a note 2 from google playstore that it. and tmobile lte is coming out early 2013 sweet and rumors said that their lte network would be the latest lte technology which mean super fast. cant wait for next year to start.

  • TechPeople

    I love how some “tech” people were saying “It’s impossible to make the LTE chip alive”.
    Well, those “techs” will have to go back to school.