It's something of a teardown day, with first the new MacBook Pro getting stripped to basics and now the Motorola XOOM suffering the same. iFixit whipped open the casing - a straightforward process, given Motorola obviously doesn't want to make things too difficult for its technicians adding in 4G modem support - and discovered that the XOOM actually uses the same hybrid CDMA/GSM modem as found in the Verizon iPhone 4.
That modem - Qualcomm's MDM6600 - supports both HSPA+ and EVDO Rev.A, though of course both the iPhone 4 and the XOOM only have the latter enabled. It suggests that Motorola may not be swapping out the modem for the GSM versions of the XOOM, the MZ601/MZ603, but simply enabling the HSPA+ support via a firmware change.
Whether that means some bright spark in the hacking community will be able to add GSM support to the Verizon model remains to be seen; it's not going to be easy, we know that. iFixit also discovered what amounts to a blanking plate saving a space for the XOOM's 4G modem, implying that will be a new board added in, rather than replacing, the original chip.
[via Android Community]