Apple’s(s aapl) iPad isn’t the only device that gets free 4G data from T-Mobile(s tmus). Look around carefully and you can find the HP Chromebook 14 and a few other HP devices with the same data deal. While you only get 200 MB of mobile broadband access each month, the service is free for as long as you own the device.
I first saw word of this deal in a Google Group where some commenters pointed out Costco as a source for the HP(s hpq) Chromebook 14 with data for life. Chromebooks have come with 200 MB of free monthly data in the past but it has only been good for two years. I checked Costco’s site and verified the deal; for $379.99, the free connection on T-Mobile’s 4G network is good for as long as you have your Chromebook.
WalMart also sells the Chromebook 14 directly for $30 less — the specs appear to be the same — and it specifically points out the deal:
“Don’t worry about connecting, even when you go beyond Wi-Fi with free 4G. Enjoy 200MB of free data each month, no annual contract, for the life of your device. For offer details and information: hp.com/go/freemobility.”
I hit up the HP site mentioned and the limited time offer applies to not just the HP Chromebook 14 but also the company’s Slate 7, Slate 10, Envy 14 Touchsmart, Envy 14 Sleekbook and ElitePad. The HP product page for the Chromebook 14 also mentions the free data for life.
Again, 200 MB won’t go very far if you use it for a primary connection. But I’ve been able to check in on email, update a few social networks, pull down an e-book and browse a few websites each month on the free data I get from T-Mobile with my iPad(s aapl) Air. And it’s a smart move for T-Mobile: If the network delivers as promised, potential customers could quickly become actual subscribers for their data hungry devices.