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Differences between the two Nexus 5 models, D820 and D821

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Differences between the two Nexus 5 models, D820 and D821
Just like many smartphones, the Nexus 5 actually has two models.There is one version for North America and another for the rest of the world. Both models look the same, and share many of the same specs. The buttons, colors, cameras are the same. The differences are in connectivity, something that you don't see. The radios in each phone are a little different.

The D820 version of the Nexus 5 is designed for North America and will connect to 2G, 3G or LTE on AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. The D821 version of the Nexus 5 is set up to work with the rest of the world. European users should have no problem with a 2G, 3G or LTE connection. But some of the Asian carriers that use different networks could pose a problem. For example, China Mobile uses a proprietary 3G pipeline that has kept the Apple iPhone off the roster of the world's largest carrier.

North America (D820) Nexus 5 model:

  • GSM: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • CDMA: Band Class: 0/1/10
  • WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/6/8/19
  • LTE: Bands: 1/2/4/5/17/19/25/26/41

Outside North America (D821) Nexus 5 model:

  • GSM: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/6/8
  • LTE: Bands: 1/3/5/7/8/20

source: AndroidCentral

56 Comments
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posted on 01 Nov 2013, 21:12

1. MrsPotatoHead (banned) (Posts: 48; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


Sound like we need some of that Chinese 3g pipeline over here - can ya hear me Sprint?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 15:27 1

24. dorianb (Posts: 333; Member since: 24 Oct 2012)


SoftBANK, the company that bought Sprint, is Japanese.
*sigh*

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 21:18 3

2. fay99 (Posts: 46; Member since: 16 Mar 2012)


Why does iphonearena open separate posts for the availability of their favorite tablet and phone from each phone carrier? Is it really necessary?

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 21:24

3. Shatter (Posts: 1766; Member since: 29 May 2013)


Google's trying to save a few $ by not giving the international full wireless ranges.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 21:42

4. virtuallypete (Posts: 7; Member since: 24 Jul 2013)


Wait, no 1700/2100 for t-mobile gsm!?! Am I missing something?

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 22:03

5. PeaceB (Posts: 14; Member since: 22 Nov 2012)


Yes you are.. T-Mo dont use 1700/2100 for GSM.
Thats 1700/2100 for WCDMA

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 22:28 3

6. freebee269 (Posts: 496; Member since: 10 Aug 2012)


t-mobile uses frequency 1700 and band 4 for LTE. they also use the same frequency and band for hspa+ which they call 4G.

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 01:14 2

8. Shatter (Posts: 1766; Member since: 29 May 2013)


WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/6/8/9

Less confusing:

WCDMA Bands:
Band 1 2100 MHz
Band 2 1900 MHz
Band 4 2100 and 1700 MHz
Band 5 850 MHz
Band 6 850 MHz
Band 8 900 MHz

So yes it has full support for Tmobile and AT&T.

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 09:34

20. virtuallypete (Posts: 7; Member since: 24 Jul 2013)


Thanks! I'm getting caught up w/the lingo. Now wondering if the CMDA bands are for Sprint or Verizon and whether I'd get better battery life with the world phone? I do want to be able to use my phone in the EU.

posted on 01 Nov 2013, 22:52

7. vincelongman (Posts: 625; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


Does anyone know if the US versions's 3G and 4G LTE would work on Vodafone New Zealand?
We use the 1800 MHz band for 4G LTE and 2100 MHz band for 3G (UMTS)

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 04:13 1

12. devil888 (Posts: 8; Member since: 11 Jan 2010)


1800 MHz is band 3, which is not there in the US version and and 2100 MHz is WCDMA band 1 so you won't get LTE in New Zealand with a US Nexus 5 but you'll get 3G

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 06:35

17. vincelongman (Posts: 625; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


Thanks
I guess its not that big of an issue for me since Auckland's 4G LTE coverage is only in the central city at the moment.

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 01:33

9. ash_arani (Posts: 2; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


So in UAE, we use 900/1800 MHz. Does that mean I can use voice calls and sms normally here if I buy the D820? I assume it will work normally but LTE will not work due to the use of different bands. I have no problem not using LTE, but I want to be able to use my phone normally. Can anyone comment please?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 04:24 1

13. devil888 (Posts: 8; Member since: 11 Jan 2010)


I assume you mean 900 for 3G and 1800 for LTE, then yes everything will work apart from LTE

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 02:36

10. jubin.mathai (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 Jun 2013)


Need help!!
I am planing to buy the Nexus 5 16 GB model from US Play Store. So will i get the North American or the International version. I need the international one i guess..... But how can i order that model?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 04:25 3

14. devil888 (Posts: 8; Member since: 11 Jan 2010)


You will get the US model from US play store and the international model from ANY other play store (e.g. UK, Germany etc)

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 06:24

16. jubin.mathai (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 Jun 2013)


Thanks for the reply.
India uses 900/1800 bands as well. So i suppose we will be able to use the North American version here in India also.

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 12:55

22. ngohad (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


India uses 900 and 1800 for GSM and 2100 for 3G. So 3G should work fine.

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 08:25

33. AbhishekGupta792 (Posts: 2; Member since: 10 Nov 2013)


thn it means we will be able to use 3G on the north american version?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 03:01

11. mc0714 (Posts: 2; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


Noob here
Will D820 work in Europe?

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 04:27 2

15. devil888 (Posts: 8; Member since: 11 Jan 2010)


LTE won't work (if you have) but everything else is fine

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 06:44 1

19. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 4599; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


Yes, D820 will work in Europe.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 11:05

45. megaturk1977 (Posts: 3; Member since: 11 Dec 2013)


can you pls tell me if the d820 will work in turkıey

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 06:43

18. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 4599; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)


Here in Europe resellers are selling D820.

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 12:33

21. dnyalexander (Posts: 10; Member since: 03 Sep 2012)


What if I live in Canada? Which one should I get?

posted on 03 Nov 2013, 19:23

25. OldNorseBruin (Posts: 77; Member since: 12 Mar 2013)


...You should get the D820...I believe the CANADIAN LTE bands for ROGERS is the same as ( USA ) AT&T's ...

posted on 02 Nov 2013, 14:48

23. Maikuh (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


I got a question, if i wanted to use it on DR with Claro or Orange (Which i read that have the same frequencies as AT&T and T-Mobile) Would it work? Or would it have to be re-unlocked or w.e on one of the companies?

posted on 04 Nov 2013, 08:52

26. kshitijlampardterry (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Nov 2013)


Will Nexus 5 bought from USA work in India? My uncle who lives in USA is visiting India. Please help.

posted on 05 Nov 2013, 13:31

27. Basharhd99 (Posts: 24; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)


I assume it will, but LTE won't so if you're willing to stick to 3g then you're good to go

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 08:27

34. AbhishekGupta792 (Posts: 2; Member since: 10 Nov 2013)


Is LTE available in india?
how is LTE diff from 3G?

posted on 07 Nov 2013, 02:46

28. jubin.mathai (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 Jun 2013)


Hi all...
I just ordered it from USA. We all know that it requires an update at the start-up. So if i do the set-up process in India will it get the update?(Remember that i would be using Indian network). Also to mention that the device is still not launched in India.

posted on 08 Nov 2013, 06:01

29. Kuttyyyy (Posts: 3; Member since: 07 Nov 2013)


is ur nexus 5 that u bought from usa is working on indian network....
plz rply,,,
m planning to get 1 from US...

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 06:50

32. jubin.mathai (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 Jun 2013)


Still waiting for the device to be shipped. The status at my Google wallet says "Pending". The phone has not been shipped yet!!

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 12:34

36. Kuttyyyy (Posts: 3; Member since: 07 Nov 2013)


Thx jubin for ur rply...
Plz let me know whn it gets shipped in india and u hav hands on nexus 5 D820...

posted on 09 Nov 2013, 10:32

30. alimahmoud_10 (Posts: 2; Member since: 09 Nov 2013)


Will the Nexus 5 D820 (US version) will work in UAE
Nexus 5 will require an update at the start-up, so if i update it using wifi and UAE sim card will the update download?
the device isn't available in UAE yet

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 06:19 1

31. ash_arani (Posts: 2; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


Yes, you can use the phone normally in the UAE right out of the box. You can even use 3G to update if wifi is not available.

The only problem with D820 in UAE is that (so far) you cannot use LTE (referred to as 4G here in UAE).

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 09:22

35. alimahmoud_10 (Posts: 2; Member since: 09 Nov 2013)


Thanks ash_arani, now I will buy it from souq.com or tell my cousins to buy it and send it to me

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 11:06

46. megaturk1977 (Posts: 3; Member since: 11 Dec 2013)


can you pls tell me if the d820 will work in turkıey

posted on 10 Nov 2013, 17:43

37. RMC604 (Posts: 1; Member since: 10 Nov 2013)


I have some questions or i need an opinion. I am candian living in japan at the moment. I may stay in japan til 2015 and return to canada. I have the option of getting the d820 in xmas (if google canada has any stock) or buy a d821 in may when my contract is finished. Either way, i will be using a nexus five. I am afraid that if buy a us nexus five, it wouldn't work well with japan or international model won't work well for north american. What should i do?

posted on 12 Nov 2013, 20:31

38. sony_007 (Posts: 2; Member since: 12 Nov 2013)


If you are not planning to use 4G in Japan, the better option is to go for D820 model that is available in Canada.

posted on 12 Jan 2014, 08:17

53. damouse33 (Posts: 1; Member since: 12 Jan 2014)


Heads up I purchaseed the us spec because of the $50 us dollar difference and the complications with ordering it from Japan, ie need JP credit card and JP mailing address being I lived on a base. I had to have it sent to a family member to mail it to me. When I received the phone it worked great on WiFi and making phone calls, but because the us spec doesn't have the Japanese equivalent of the US FCC CODE in the regulations section of the phone you can not get it to work nor get a contract with Docomo, Softbank, or au. It becomes a smart dumb phone. Only good for calls that's it. So I had to send it back to my family for them to send it in for a refund. Just pay the extra 50+ bucks to get the Asia spec. By the time you get back the nexus 6 or 7 phone should be out.

posted on 12 Nov 2013, 20:35

39. sony_007 (Posts: 2; Member since: 12 Nov 2013)


I was planning to buy from US, but since this model is not compatible in India in terms of 4G, I have dropped the plan.

Any one have an idea where we will get the international version D821 cheaper?:)

posted on 18 Nov 2013, 01:24

40. prasadc89 (Posts: 1; Member since: 18 Nov 2013)


I am planning to buy Nexus 5 D821 from US and bring it in India. Please let me know its cost there and possible compability issues in India (other than mentioned above).

posted on 02 Dec 2013, 14:53

41. Ajwad.Abbas (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Dec 2013)


Will D820 work in KSA?

posted on 16 Feb 2014, 05:37

54. microsoftee (Posts: 2; Member since: 16 Feb 2014)


D820 not working at all with KSA SIM cards in KSA. I ordered one by mistake from US, though it has listed in box following and KSA networks using 900/1800 as from this link but still not working, it says "SIM not detected"

Saudi Arabia 900 1800 3G 2100 4G STC, Mobily and Zain Saudi
worldtimezone[dot]com/gsm.html

GSM: 850/900/1800/1900
WCDMA: 800/850/900AWS/1900/2100
CDMA: 850/1900
LTE: 800/850/AWS/700/1900/2100/TD2600

posted on 04 Dec 2013, 05:47

42. amif18 (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Dec 2013)


Will the D820 work well also in Europe?

posted on 04 Dec 2013, 11:34

43. ashmenon (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Dec 2013)


please help..will nexus 5 model D820 works in india, ?without an exception of LTE/4G support

posted on 05 Dec 2013, 06:13 1

44. jubin.mathai (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 Jun 2013)


Hi ashmenon, D820 will work in India but you will not be able to use 4G.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 11:07

47. megaturk1977 (Posts: 3; Member since: 11 Dec 2013)


can you pls tell me if the d820 will work in turkıey

posted on 12 Dec 2013, 08:51

48. kaveen (Posts: 1; Member since: 12 Dec 2013)


hi jubin.mathai i want to know about the update question u asked befr a??? does d820 work with airtel also have u got any update for 4.4.2!!!and is there any wifi problems???????????????? badly in need of answers for these questions!!

posted on 14 Dec 2013, 00:06

49. tommy_abra (Posts: 1; Member since: 13 Dec 2013)


hi guys! i have a question...
i want to know if the model D820 will work in Argentina?, we use GSM850/1900- 3G 850/1900.
thanks

posted on 21 Dec 2013, 11:13

50. Gallardo (Posts: 1; Member since: 21 Dec 2013)


Hi guys. What model works in latin america, specifically in Venezuela? Both? LTE works 1800MHZ

posted on 22 Dec 2013, 06:13

51. mc0714 (Posts: 2; Member since: 02 Nov 2013)


hello guys

American version works perfecly in Poland (calls, sms, 3G)

posted on 22 Dec 2013, 10:14

52. t.sumesh (Posts: 1; Member since: 22 Dec 2013)


In India LTE bands for various telecom service providers are 40 and 3.
3 for vodafone and 40 for others,unfortunately both the models

North America (D820) Nexus 5 model:

GSM: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
CDMA: Band Class: 0/1/10
WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/6/8/19
LTE: Bands: 1/2/4/5/17/19/25/26/41

Outside North America (D821) Nexus 5 model:

GSM: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/6/8
LTE: Bands: 1/3/5/7/8/20
not supporting 40.

pl check th link below.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_LTE_networks

am i right?

posted on 16 Feb 2014, 05:40

55. microsoftee (Posts: 2; Member since: 16 Feb 2014)


I ordered D820 and it's not working here in Saudi Arabia, it says SIM not detected but according to this link the network in Saudi Arabia is supporting 900/1800 3G: 2100 and same is listed in Nexus 5 D820 box.

posted on 24 Mar 2014, 09:52

56. vixify (Posts: 1; Member since: 24 Mar 2014)


Hi everyone, Can i use a nexus 5 bought in US over in India? I mean will 3g and 4g/LTE work over here? and also which of the two models is better suited for Indian network?

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