The Nexus 9 Android tablet, made by HTC, is a great little device with a bit of a high price tag. But if you just need a tablet that can get online with or without Wi-Fi, then today’s your lucky day: you can buy the Nexus 9 with LTE connectivity from T-Mobile right now for $0 up front and $24.99 a month over the course of 24 months – which equals a grand total of $599.76. T-Mobile is the first wireless carrier in the United States to offer the LTE version of the Nexus 9.
So what does $600 get you? Well, it’s $120 more than the non-LTE version with 32GB of internal storage, so it’s not too much more for the added benefit of on-the-go connectivity. However, if you actually want to, you know, use that LTE capability, you’ve got to add the Nexus 9 to your mobile plan, which T-Mobile offers for an extra $10 a month. What that basically means is that after 24 months, the amount of money you’ll have spent on your Nexus 9 is $840.
To me, that’s completely crazy. But hey, that’s me. Some people need to feel connected with every single device possible, no matter where they are. My Nexus 5 with T-Mobile happens to offer some really good Wi-Fi tethering, which means that I can get my Nexus 9 tablet onto the T-Mobile LTE network using my phone as a hotspot – all without having to pay that high price. On the other hand, at a certain point T-Mobile caps my tethering and then I’m SOL.
If you were hoping to get a Nexus 9 LTE with a different carrier, the Google Play Store lists the device as “coming soon,” so you’ll be able to buy it and slide in whatever SIM card you want. You won’t be able to opt for a cheaper, lower-storage model, however; it seems that Google and HTC have decided to only put LTE connectivity in the 32GB model.
If you don’t care about whether you use Android or iOS, a post on TechCrunch rightly points out that you can buy an iPad with LTE connectivity for roughly the same price – so think on that while you’re investigating your tablet choices.