If you have picked up your WiFi-Only model of the Motorola Xoom, you have probably found the SIM card slot and have been banging your head against the wall trying to figure out why it’s there. If you are unfamiliar with the way mobile internet works, a SIM card is needed for GSM carriers (and CDMA for 4G) to activate the device on the network. However, a WiFi-only model shouldn’t need a SIM card…thus the name WiFi-only. So why in the world is there a SIM card slot on the WiFi-only model of the Motorola Xoom?!
Motorola has not officially released a statement as to why the extra slot appears there, so consumers took it upon themselves to create theories. Some say that the WiFi-only model has a 3G/4G feature. However, that would require a 3G/4G antenna which is not inside of the WiFi-only model. Therefore, this theory doesn’t make any sense. Others say that the Xoom will work as a phone (similar to the original Samsung Galaxy Tab) after a software update. Again, this would require not only a software update but an additional antenna. All in all, the SIM card slot is completely useless due to the lack of any wireless antennas that would take advantage of a SIM card.
One of my favorite theories comes from Sean Aune from TechnoBuffalo. Aune has experience in the financial aspects of companies like Motorola. He states that creating a molding of a product like the Xoom can become very costly, around $100,000. Removing the SIM card slot on the WiFi-only model would require a new molding, therefore requiring more money. Instead of spending money to remove a little hole that can be easily ignored (or used as a holder for another SIM card or a memory card), companies many times just use the same mold for different models of a product.
Although this theory by any means hasn’t been confirmed, it is the one that makes the most sense out of all of the theories that I have read. Do you have a theory on why the SIM card slot is on the WiFi-only model or do you agree with Sean’s? Let us know in the comments!