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WWAN
pghFL
Posts: 1,773
Registered: ‎08-17-2011
Location: USA
0

3G upgradeable?

Is this model - Lenovo ThinkPad 183825U - one of the ones that is 3G upgradeable if I want to? How much to purchase the parts, etc., to accomplish this? Thanks in advance.

 

 

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Don't get mad, get root.
3679CTO
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pdl099
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎09-10-2011
Location: US

Re: 3G upgradeable?

Upgrading your Thinkpad Tablet to 3G

NOTE: The installation of a 3G modem card is not a field serviceable activity and will void your warranty.  I am not responsible for any damages resulting from following these instructions.

Before you get started, you will need the following:

  • Thinkpad 1838 or 1839 tablet
  • Paperclip
  • Small Philips head screwdriver
  • Nylon/plastic pry tool
  • Lenovo Gobi 3000 WWAN card (Part #0A36185) - ~$110 - $125 (online), I purchased this part for $109 shipped from Overstock.com


Step 1: Turn off power to your tablet.  Insert the end of a paper clip or pen into the power cutoff button.


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Step 2: Remove the buttons.  Insert the fingernail of your thumb underneath the side of the button and push/pull up to release the button.


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Step 3: Remove the 2 case screws.


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Step 4: Now for the hard part.  There are plastic clips all around the case holding the screen case (top) to the main case (bottom).  Use a plastic pry tool (I would not recommend a screw driver as this will likely damage the case) and jamb the end of the tool as shown in the seam between the top case and the bottom case.  Push the tool along the seam and the clips should start to release fairly easily.  Once the final clip has been released, the bottom and top should separate.  Be careful, there are ribbon wires connecting the top and bottom cases.  


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Step 5: Locate the space for the WWAN card (as shown below).  Make sure you have the red and blue antenna leads.  The leads should be capped with transparent plastic cover.  Remove the covers.

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Step 6: Insert the WWAN card into the card slot and attach the antenna leads.

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Step 7: Almost done! Let's test this thing first. Insert a SIM card into the SIM slot. Fold the top case back with the bottom case but don't reassemble it just yet.

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Step 8: Start up the tablet by holding on to the power button.  Go to the device Settings menu.  Select 'Wireless & networks'.  You should now see an option for 'Mobile networks'.  Select this option.

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Step 9: Activate your device.  Select 'Activate device'.  Select your mobile broadband carrier.  In this example, I selected AT&T.  The tablet will go through the activation process for the carrier.

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Step 10: Once the activation process is complete, reboot your device.  I made the mistake initially of not rebooting and spent 10-15 minutes trying to figure out why the tablet wouldn't accept my APN settings.  Once the device has rebooted go to Settings - Wireless & networks - Mobile networks - Access Point Names.  Select the appropriate APN (will vary by carrier, example is AT&T).  For AT&T, I selected the 'wap.cingular' option.  Make sure 'Data enabled' is selected on the previous screen.

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That's it, your Thinkpad tablet should now be 3G enabled.  You should see an option on the notification bar settings for turning on/off mobile broadband.  Now reassemble your device and enjoy!

WWAN
pghFL
Posts: 1,773
Registered: ‎08-17-2011
Location: USA
0

Re: 3G upgradeable?

OMG. You rock!!! Thank you.

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Don't get mad, get root.
3679CTO
SCSI Port
emersonvier
Posts: 61
Registered: ‎03-25-2010
Location: SAO PAULO-BRAZIL
0

Re: 3G upgradeable?

pdl099

 

Thank a lot for your post.

 

EMERSON VIER

Thx,
EMERSON VIER
183825U - 4.0.3 - FW A400_03_0070_0132_US + Gobi 3000
Serial Port
ELCamino
Posts: 126
Registered: ‎02-11-2010
Location: SD
0

Re: 3G upgradeable?

Hopefully that the 1838 model ThinkPad tablet has the slot already soldered on the board like the 1839 model that is shown above with the pictures. Would be nice to have the option to add the 3G card. For now, I'm just tethering to my Nexus S or iPhone 4.
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syskill
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎08-29-2011
Location: USA
0

Re: 3G upgradeable?

Haha, looks like everyone has a tablet with a WWAN antenna except me... :smileysad: I guess I'll put mine on eBay and try my luck again when Lenovo officially releases a WWAN-enabled tablet.

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esjones
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-16-2010
Location: Ohio
0

Re: 3G upgradable?

bagatyr: North America uses different GSM bands than the rest of the world. It's not an AT&T thing.

DUTCHvanAtlanta: Most GSM phones are quad-band so they work in North America and the rest of the world. Yours is obviously quad-band.
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esjones
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-16-2010
Location: Ohio
0

Re: Successfully completed 3G upgrade

Is your ThinkPad a model 1838 or 1839?
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underclocker
Posts: 14
Registered: ‎12-26-2007
Location: Washington, D.C.
0

Re: Successfully completed 3G upgrade

[ Edited ]

Great WWAN upgrade instructions, thank you for posting!

 

I just did the upgrade using a Lenovo branded Ericsson F5521gw WWAN adapter.  It works!  It will work on AT&T in the U.S.

 

Two notes about the upgrade;

 

1) I used a spare screw to secure the WWAN adapter to the Tablet, there is one threaded post available there

2) I used a credit card to separate the two halves of the tablet - no scratches

 

NOTE: During a two hour phone support call, AT&T was able to enable a laptop data plan, but not a tablet data plan because the IMEI associated with the WWAN adapter shows a Lenovo ThinkPad.  This is an issue because there is a big cost difference between the laptop and tablet plans.  The next day I stopped by an AT&T store, problem solved in ten minutes.  I now have the post-paid 2GB @ $25 month plan on my ThinkPad Tablet.

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blanddnalb
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎09-15-2011
Location: Leland, IL
0

Re: 3G upgradeable?

Does anyone know if this process will void the warranty?  It looks like they made it to be upgradeable but I am just on the side of caution.