T-Mobile Nexus 5 16GB now available for $450 unlocked, or $41.99 down payment for $17 per month


t-mobile nexus 5

If, for some odd reason, you decided to get your Nexus 5 through T-Mobile, you’ll be glad to know that the handset is officially available for purchase starting today. T-Mobile pricing isn’t as attractive as what you can buy in the Google Play Store, with the carrier pricing their 16GB model at $450 unlocked.

You can get the same exact model from the Google Play Store for $350, though you might have a more tough time as shipping delays have hit crept up in recent days. For that matter, T-Mobile’s 16GB model is $50 more expensive than the 32GB model in the Play Store.

Of course, T-Mobile customers can also opt to get the device for a down payment of $41.99, which makes you responsible for payments of $17 per month for 24 months. We can’t say we’re too surprised that T-Mobile’s offering is more expensive considering we went through the same ordeal with last year’s Nexus 4. Carriers have to make money too, folks, so it’s never wise to expect the same healthy subsidization Google gives you for buying it straight from the Google Play Store.

That said, if you don’t have a problem with paying a bit extra to get the extra “perks” you’ll be entitled to (such as insurance, customer support and more), then be sure to swing by Magenta’s website and order one right away. Our full review is on its way, so be on the lookout for that if you need more convincing.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. As great as this is, I paid less all together for the 32GB White version from the play store.

  2. Trying to upgrade my current line and says it’s back ordered. Even called to see what was happening and they couldn’t give me an answer. Looks like only new customers can get it today. I am going to just cancel the order and pick it up on the 20th at the store if it doesn’t ship today.

    1. Yeah, customer service doesn’t know much about it. It’s funny… whenever I call them, they have no clue what I’m talking about. “The Nexus 5? I don’t think we’re going to be selling that phone, sir”.

      So, my question… now that T-Mobile isn’t doing contracts, is there a retention department that’ll give me a reason to stay after 8 years?

    2. Yeah, I had the same thing. Didn’t order it because with backorder+shipping, it’ll be in the stores before I get it. As a new customer, seems like there’s no backorder, plus free shipping.

  3. Will the T-Mobile version be be locked and have bloatware?

    1. that is my question…and will it have Wi-Fi calling feature?

      1. No and no. Cant be locked and still be a nexus. Its probably why they think they should charge more, to prevent you from just using them as a way around the shortages on Google Play.

        1. I asked because I remember the VZW Galaxy Nexus, but yeah makes sense.

          1. Oh yeah, I forgot about that (although Google sure hasn’t).

  4. I don’t get it, why would anyone pay more to get from T Mobile when it’s cheaper with Google

    1. My guess is so you can just walk into a store and get it, instead of ordering from Google and waiting a month.

      1. Or cause a lot of people who buy it don’t have $400 on the spot to buy it.

        1. well as I understand it, the 449 is when you buy it upfront (which would be cheaper on Google). The 41.99 must be on contract. Hence, the 449$ price is still ridiculous imo

          1. I agree, but like I said not everyone has the luxury to spend $350 on a phone straight up. It’s like buying a car. Of course it comes out cheaper to pay for a $20,000 car in cash, but some people can’t and that’s why they finance.

          2. If you can’t afford to buy a $350 phone, you can’t afford to finance it either.

            Financing a car can make sense, if you can do it at 0%. If not, you are better off buying a cheaper car.

            This is the crap that keeps people poor. Stop spending beyond your means.

          3. Lol okay cool guy.

          4. What an articulate and productive comment.

            The fact stands, if you cannot pay $350 for a phone you should not be paying $450 for it either. Living within your means is an important life lesson. Clearly one you still need to learn.

          5. Hahaha that’s your opinion. You sound angry. You should seek help. Stop worrying about how others spend their money. Just because you have deep pockets doesn’t mean everyone else does. Thus, a person may pay $17 a month on the phone to live within their means. And don’t tell me what lessons of life I need to learn cause you don’t know me. All I did here was give a valid point as to why someone would choose the T-Mobile option. I chose to go with T-Mobile cause I have Jump and I could upgrade my phone every six months. And trust me, doing so is well within the means of my life. I know you’re one of those people who needs to have the last word so have fun with your next post. Victory is yours. Ignorance at is finest.

          6. I am not angry, I am sad for people like that.
            A person who can only afford $17 a month for a phone would be better off going on republic wireless and saving some money.

            Ignorance? Says the guy who thinks people who can’t come up with $400 need a smartphone.

          7. You’re making some pretty big assumptions. I can afford it, but I have better things to spend $350 on up front, which also leaves me with the hassle of selling the phone when I’m ready to upgrade. One of the points of JUMP is to be able to swap phones twice a year. I’m essentially leasing my phone as opposed to buying it outright with the hopes I can exchange it and only pay for my usage. I think people lease cars nowadays, no?

          8. If you can’t spare the $350 you can’t afford it.
            Would taking $350 from you now impact your savings? If the answer is yes, you can’t afford it. If you have no savings, then you should not even be considering this kind of luxury purchase.

            If you can’t spare $350, should you really be paying $450 on a phone via payments? Maybe instead you should buy something cheaper and save your money.

            Leasing cars is not a great idea for most folks. It only works out if you really value switching cars a lot, and have spare income to waste. Most folks would be better off buying and trading later. This is because even the most anti-repair car owner can generally make it 5 years before having any real issues with a modern car. In the same way buying a phone for $350 and selling it in 6-12 months for $200 is generally a better idea. There is a little hassle but a lot of money can be saved.

            I realize that bad spending habits are something our entire society seems to encourage, but are you really happier with a new shiny thing than being financially secure?

          9. You’re missing the point completely and seem to be focused on people that can’t afford it. That’s great, those people exist, but there are people that have other reasons. There’s a difference between having $350 to spare and having better things to spend it on. Being financially responsible, I find myself talking myself out of higher priced items such as TVs, tablets, etc just because I don’t like dropping that much money at once save for necessities. As you mentioned, leasing cars is a good idea for some people and as such is a good idea for some phone users as well. But you seem to always come back to those that can’t afford it.

            Also, buying a phone for $350 and selling it for $200 is great. Leasing it for $42 + (17*6) = $144 and handing it back over with no hassle is even better. I paid $144 for my usage and you’ve paid $150 on top of having to sell it.

          10. Also, I’ve left out the cost of JUMP itself ($10/mo) because that also provides for insurance whereas buying the device outright does not afford you that luxury. People seem to forget that and want to jump (see what I did there?) on the fact that there’s a fee for the program itself.

          11. Insurance for a phone is a scam. The deductible makes it totally pointless unless you break the phone very early on, as does the fact that you get a refurb not new device. Once you add that in your are looking at having paid $204 for 6 months of having a phone.

          12. Before I ordered my N5 from Google I called Tmo and the rep started that I could add insurance at the time of activation.

          13. That doesn’t make any sense though. You’re spreading the $450 across 2 years. How would you not be financially secure? You’re spreading your money across everything instead of spending it all on one thing.

            You’re really confusing me. From what you’re saying, people shouldn’t buy cars, houses, land, boats, airplanes, etc because they can’t afford to pay the full cost right there.

            I buy the phone for $450 and spread it across 2 years. I’m not going to be financially hurt by that. I can still get a profit from my income. My bills will still be paid on time and I’ll still have money left over to put into my savings and go out.

            I’m sorry, but I’m not seeing the bad buying habit. I’m assuming you’re talking about when there’s no payment plan option and people buy something outright when they can’t afford it.

          14. I am talking about paying $450 for something that costs $350 because you can’t afford $350. That is simply a bad decision. Cars should be bought in cash, houses as much as possible too.

            A bad buying habit is paying more for something you don’t need because you can’t afford to pay for it outright.

          15. T-Mobile doesn’t have contracts anymore…

          16. did not know that

        2. If you can’t come up with a $400 you can’t afford to have a smartphone plan. This is the stupid crap that keeps poor folks poor.

          1. WTF!? This is such a bad way of thinking. It’s not that people can’t afford to drop $400. It’s just that they rather use that $400 to get more than one thing.

            Why not get 4 things with a $100 down payment and pay it off in the end? It helps your credit and you can have more things now. =.D

            The money loss is in the long run. And if what you’re saying is true, people should be able to spare $100, right?

    2. Ultimately, no credit card, and unable to get one, and can’t/don’t want to save the money. Luckily I’d been saving since mid-September, so it worked for me to get the phone on launch.

      1. I paid the 42.00 up front with the 17/mo payments and with renewing my contract with T-Mobile on the classic plans, i was able to get a discount of 5 dollar on my talk plan and a 15 dollar dollar discount on my data plan so after upgrading to the Nexus 5 im saving 3 bucks a month and thats with the payment for the phone.

        1. You could have got those discounts on your talk and data plans just by extending your contract (not using your phone upgrade) and then bought the phone from the Play Store for cheaper.

    3. works out to ~15% annual interest. about same as if someone paid full price but put it on credit card. this way magenta gets the interest and customer who can’t lay out $400 gets a new financed device.

      do you have to buy from T-Mobile to get the Up phone refresh thing?

  5. CNET reports that the price is based on what T-Mobile pays LG per device.


  6. Aren’t there laws against price gauging?

    1. No, why would there be laws against gauging prices? Do you think measuring quantities of money is immoral?

        1. “gouging”

        2. Read what I wrote again. This time very slowly.

          Gauging is the act of measuring something. Taking its gauge. As in “This is 4 gauge wire”.

          Gouging is charging an unusually high price for something.

      1. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! Dude that was sooo wrong but sooooooo funny!

    2. Tony please SERIOUSLY tell me you are joking! PLEASE educate yourself on what constitutes gouging.

    3. Only thing I know is regulated by law with price gauging is Gas.

    4. Aw shiiiiit you guys got me.

  7. Or you can just go to Google direct and buy the 32GB version for $50 less than T-Mobile is charging. If someone is that impatient then I guess that is the price of not being able to wait a few weeks.

  8. The only benefit I could see is instant gratification if you could get one in stock at the store. And if there’s anything wrong with it, it’s much easier to go back to the store rather than dealing with Google or TMobile online. But is that worth the $50 bump? The payment plan system might work for those who can’t cough up the money up front but that’s a different story.

    Who exactly does this appeal to? Those who know and care about the N5 are probably just going to go to Google’s site. N5 owners tend to be fairly techy and decently informed. Very few people will fall for this. Any why the bump in the first play? Most phones including the iPhone is sold consistently at the same price no matter where you get it from. It’s not like Apple offers it cheaper than the carriers do. This is definitely price gouging.

    1. its not a bump in price by tmobile, its a cut in price by google on the playstore. Also, with christmas around the corner, its must easier to justify spending $50 on yourself n $17 over 2 months, then to spend $400 on yourself right now. Especially if you plan on buying a next gen system. That would be plopping down pretty much $1000.

    2. It’s not a $50 bump, it’s a $100 bump. The 32GB one through Google is only $400. The 16GB version is only $350. TMobile is charging $450 for the 16GB version, and yeah they are gouging the crap out of it.

  9. If you buy it through T-mobile you can use the JUMP program and have insurance on it. Not sure if it would be much cheaper in the end, but at least you have the options.

  10. Rip Off~!

  11. Guys the point of this phone is to get it through the jump program. You can do a down payment and then pay monthly like the article says. Perks of the program is that you get security, and protection for your phone. You can’t do this with the straight up Google version because it’s not a T-Mobile phone. So you may be paying more but if something happens to the phone out you want to jump to a new one you didn’t just spend $350 on a phone.

    1. It’s not a TMobile phone if they don’t support WiFi calling on it (which they don’t), just a phone they are taking middleman cut from.

      1. tthat was my concern..i need wifi calling…makes me not want to get nexus 5 at all honestly.

  12. You 100% need to change this line “… same healthy subsidization Google…” to say “… same healthy wholesale pricing Google…”

    Knock it off with the wrong wording

  13. This is a great phone! As far as T-Mobile goes there is one thing that you should be aware of. If you decide on the T-Mobile option you will NOT get the T-Mobile WiFi calling feature that they give their T-Mobile branded smartphone customers. You will really need this capability if you frequent or live in large areas of the country with low population densities where you can get WiFi in truck stops and diners, but may not get cell service. Do you really want to pay T-Mobile the $100 premium for 2nd class service?

    1. I’m sure they did this because previous Nexus device on T-mobile didn’t get the updates at the same time because of the Wifi-calling, and people complained. So now they are giving it completely stock and people are complaining again. Can’t please everyone.

      1. For an extra $100, over what you can buy it for on the Play store, for the EXACT same phone, people should complain.

        1. Did you not read the article lol. There are perks with getting it through T-Mobile. In person customer service, getting the phone right away, being able to make payments, able to have insurance on it.

          Not everyone has $350+ they can just drop on a smart phone that will take them about a month now to get,

          Not to mention, people shouldn’t complain because T-Mobile is buying these directly from LG, not Google. LG sells them at a higher cost. If people want to complain, they should just not say anything and buy it from the Play Store.

          1. I read it. The “perks” are not worth $100.

          2. Maybe not to you. But for others, its well worth the extra money.

            I’m not sure why you seem to justify that people should only buy it through Google Play. Some people like options.

          3. like being on the latest nexus w/ the “JUMP” program and not paying as much in general…

        2. You pay for convenience.

  14. This no contract stuff seems designed more to benefit individuals more than families.. You’re telling me if I want to buy 3 phones for my family I would have to pay somewhere around $1350 up front and if I don’t want to do that I have to pay $17 x 3 a month on top of my $150 monthly family plan which raises the price to $201 a month for the next 24 months?

    Damn, guess my family will be using their old phones for a while.. No way im spending that much money… Guess I’m just too cheap or every other family just has crap loads of spare money lying around…

    1. Let me try and spell the math out to you, on your example, say you payed the bloated t-mobile price for the nexus 5, 3 lines would cost you $126 up front, and then you would have to make $51 extra payment on top of your bill, for 3 lines you would only pay $90 for everything, thus your bill would $141 for the next 24 months, unless you decide to leave early and then you just pay the balance left on the phones, Considerably cheaper than you $300 upfront for the S3 then your $150 bill( cheaper by $390 over 2 years).

      But if your going to do the math, you wouldn’t buy from t-mobile, you would get it for $100 cheaper per phone off Google play. Then your total cost would be $300 cheaper than the example above or $690 cheaper than your S3 deal.

      I have 5 phones on t-mobile(unlimited everything) and I pay $123 after taxes each month, If people we’ll take the time to crunch the numbers, I can’t understand why anyone would choose anyone else unless t-mobile service is really crappy where they live. For me it’s 4G LTE everywhere I go.

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