Motorola will start upgrading existing Xoom tablet owners to 4G LTE within the next week, but the initial pilot program will target only business and government customers, says enthusiast site Droid Life.
According to an e-mail reportedly received by a Droid Life reader, Motorola is "piloting" the initial upgrade just to business and government customers before it starts rolling out 4G en masse to individual Xoom owners.
In late July, Verizon confirmed that the Xoom's 4G LTE upgrade would kick off sometime in September following several months of delays. As reported earlier this year, the upgrade to 4G is free, but the process requires Xoom owners to mail back their tablets for a hardware retrofit.
Earlier instructions had directed users to mail their tablets back to Verizon. But the e-mail posted by Droid Life instead is telling Xoom business and government owners to send their tablets directly to Motorola. Still, the process seems to be the same.
Registering at the Motorola Xoom Web page should trigger an e-mail from the company when the upgrade is available. Verizon also offers its own registration page through which Xoom owners can find out when the 4G upgrade is ready.
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Xoom owners are advised to back up their files and personal data and either encrypt their information or reset the Xoom back to its initial factory state. People who've registered for the upgrade will receive a box and shipping material from Motorola, which they can use to ship the tablet.
Verizon had previously cautioned Xoom owners they they'd be without their tablets for about six days. But the e-mail published by Droid Life is promising a turnaround time from Motorola of only three days, at least for business and government customers.
Motorola did not immediately respond to CNET's request for comment.