Google nexus 7 The Next Generation Of Computer Tablets Report
Nexus #7 Reports
In 2008, when the Eee PC was revolutionizing the computing world and driving every manufacturer to
make cheaper and smaller laptops, Sony washed its hands of the whole thing. The "race to the bottom,"
the company said, would profoundly impact the industry, killing profit margins and flooding the market
with cheap, terrible machines. Sony was wrong, its stance lasting about a year before joining the
competition with its own VAIO W.
Four years on we're buying better laptops than ever before and, with the netbook class now more or less
dead, that downward competition seems to have shifted to the tablet front. A flood of cheap, truly awful
slates preceded Amazon's Kindle Fire, the $200 tablet from a major brand that looks to have been the
proper catalyst in plunging prices. The latest challenger to enter the competition is ASUS, partnering
with Google to create the first Nexus tablet, a device that not only will amaze with its MSRP, but with
its quality. It's called the Nexus 7, it too is $200, and it's better than Amazon's offering in every way but
Nexus 7 review
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Though that low cost is the big talking point about this tablet, you'd certainly never know it just by
holding the thing. Okay, so there's more polycarbonate than panache here, but the design of the Nexus 7
feels reasonably high-end, starting with that rubberized back. Yes, it is rubber, but it's very nicely
textured, nice enough to fool one tech journalist into thinking it was leather.
Though the cost is the big talking point about this tablet, you'd certainly never know it just by
holding the thing.
No cow shed its skin to cover the back of this tablet, of that we can assure you, but the dimpled pattern
here is not unlike the sort you might find on leather-wrapped racecar steering wheels. While there's no
MOMO logo to be found, the feel is much the same and, we presume, rather more durable. There are
two other logos to be found, though, starting with the Nexus branding embossed in big letters on the
top, with a much smaller ASUS graphic on the bottom. That's it, though: understated and sophisticated.
Just how we like it. (Even the FCC logo and other noise are on a piece of plastic you can easily peel
off.) There's also no camera lens poking out here, as the 1.2-megapixel shooter up front is all you get.
Nexus 7 vs. Galaxy Tab 7.7 vs. Galaxy Tab 2 7.0
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Move further down toward the bottom of the back and you'll find the device's single speaker. It's a slit
that runs roughly two-thirds of the way across the back, centered and sitting about a half-inch above the
bottom -- which is, by the way, where you'll find the tablet's only ports. Centered down there is a
micro-USB connector and, to the far right side when looking at the display, the 3.5mm headphone jack.
That's it. Thankfully, ASUS's proprietary connector found on the Transformer tablets doesn't make an
appearance here, but neither do we get a dedicated HDMI output, which is a bit of a bummer. (You can,
of course, use an MHL adapter if you like.)
On the left edge of the device, similar dock contacts to those found on the Galaxy Nexus can be found,
presumably waiting to be tickled by some future accessory, while up top you'll find ... nothing. Just the
silvery ring that runs around the full device. It looks like brushed metal, but feels more like plastic.
Even so, the tablet has a very sturdy, strong feel to it -- but that's partly thanks to it being just a little bit
It measures 10.45mm (0.41 inches) thick, which is just half a millimeter thinner than the Kindle Fire -itself no slender belle. But, crucially, it weighs much less: 340g (12 ounces) versus 413g (14.6 ounces)
for the Fire. That's a very noticeable difference and it makes the Nexus 7 much nicer to carry around.
Its curved edges, too, make it far more comfortable.
On the inside is an NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor running at 1.2GHz (though it can step up to
1.3GHz when it wants to) and paired with 1GB of RAM with either eight or 16 gigs of flash storage
(doubling the capacity will cost you a $50 premium). As there's no microSD expansion here, you'll
probably want to pay the extra cash. WiFi (802.11b/g/n) is your only option for data connectivity,
though there's naturally Bluetooth and NFC, not to mention GPS, an accelerometer, a digital compass
and a gyroscope, too.
Display and sound
Budget tablets typically make the biggest sacrifices on the display front, and certainly the 1,024 x 600
resolution on the Kindle Fire feels a bit constricting at this point. Not so with the Nexus 7, which is
fronted by a very nice 1,280 x 800 IPS panel rated at 400 nits of brightness. While more pixels is
always better -- the new iPad and its Retina display having made us yearn for ridiculously high
resolutions in all our devices -- WXGA feels perfectly adequate here. Text is rendered very well and
720p videos look great.
Much of that, though, is thanks to the other, less quantifiable aspects of the screen. Viewing angles are
top-notch, with contrast staying strong regardless of which side you're coming from. And, it's plenty
bright, too, a properly nice screen that, like everything else here, is just a little nicer than you'd expect
given the cost.
Audio, however, isn't exactly fighting above its class. The speakers integrated in the back and peeking
out through a slender slit toward the bottom deliver a decent amount of sound that isn't too unpleasant
to listen to. It passes the "loud enough to fill a hotel room" test but the quality at those levels will leave
you reaching for your earbuds.
Performance and battery life
When Jen-Hsun Huang teased Tegra 3-powered tablets would drop under $200 this summer he
obviously knew what was coming, but what we didn't know was just how far back those tablets would
have to be scaled to make that price point. If you've been reading all the way through to here (and we
love you for it) you'll know we haven't yet found a real compromise made to achieve that price.
Compromises will not be found in this section, either.
Okay, so a 35-second boot time does leave a little bit to be desired, but once you're inside the OS,
applications load quickly and respond briskly, even graphics-heavy ones like the Google Play magazine
app. Webpages are rendered promptly and swiping through them is snappy. Sure, there are the
occasional stutters and hiccups here that even a coating of Butter doesn't completely eliminate, but
we've experienced those with even the top-shelf tablets, like the recent Transformer Pad Infinity TF700
with its 1.7GHz version of the Tegra 3 processor.
If benchmarks are to be believed, this little guy actually performs better than its bigger brothers.
In fact, if benchmarks are to be believed, this little guy actually performs better than its bigger brothers.
completed on average in a relatively speedy 1,785ms. The tablet burned through Vellamo with an
average score of 1,650 and notched 11,713 in CF-Bench. Only the Quadrant score was on the low side
compared to the much higher-priced competition, coming in at 3,501.
ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity ASUS Transformer
SunSpider 0.9.1 (ms)
SunSpider: lower scores are
Since there were plenty of people freaking out about the new iPad getting warm when gaming and
doing other intensive tasks we'll point out briefly that the Nexus 7 was noticeably increasing in
temperature as these benchmarks cooked away. But, at no point did it become disconcertingly hot. Just
a little toasty.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7
Apple iPad 2
Acer Iconia Tab A510
ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime
10:17 / 16:34 (keyboard dock)
Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
Apple iPad (2012)
9:52 (HSPA) / 9:37 (LTE)
Apple iPad (2011)
ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity TF700
9:25 / 14:43 (keyboard dock)
Toshiba Excite 10
Motorola Xoom 2
Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1
ASUS Transformer Pad TF300
8:29 / 12:04 (keyboard dock)
And of course a tablet is only good for as long as you can use the thing, and we were quite impressed
by the longevity here. We came within spitting distance of 10 hours on a charge using out standard
rundown test, which has the tablet connected on WiFi and looping a video endlessly. That's very, very
good for a budget 7-incher and bests many bigger, more expensive slates.
The Nexus 7 is the first device shipping with Android 4.1. We'll defer to our full review of Jelly Bean
for full impressions, as it's far too much to get into here, but there are a few aspects of the latest
additions to Android that are worth pointing out.
Like those magazine subscriptions we mentioned above, for example. The Play Magazines app is a
perfectly respectable reader that has a great selection of content and very smooth performance. While
pinch-to-zoom is quite fluid, thanks to the reasonably high-res screen you won't necessarily have to do
so as often as you might on the Fire. That's because text is clear and readable if you still have the
eyesight to match -- though should you want something a bit easier to parse there's a handy text view.
Google Maps in Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean)
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In terms of pricing, though, we found many magazines to be slightly more expensive here than they are
on the Fire. Music, too, tends to cost a dollar or two more per album than what Amazon offers in its
MP3 download store. Thankfully, since all that music is DRM-free, there's nothing stopping you from
loading up your tablet with what you've bought elsewhere. Nothing, at least, other than the somewhat
limited amount of internal storage.
You can finally uninstall that ancient Chrome to Phone plugin.
And then, of course, there's the new stock browser, Chrome. Not a lot has changed since our first
impressions a few months ago, so it's still a nice step up from the boring, old Browser app on previous
versions of Android. Rendering performance is generally good, and the ability to import open tabs from
a desktop browsing session is very handy, indeed. You can finally uninstall that ancient Chrome to
First leaked images
Google's Nexus 7 tablet outed before I/O 2012
Nexus 7 tablet hands-on (video)
The Nexus 7 is an amazing package for something that costs a penny less than $200. It feels like
something that could sell for much more. It has a great screen, solid performance and a clean, clear,
uncluttered version of Google's latest operating system, Jelly Bean. From a pure hardware standpoint it
beats the Kindle in every way possible -- except for content. Amazon's selection almost always trumps
that of Google's, both in terms of variety and cost, but that's one wonderful problem to have, because
almost all of that content is just as available on the Nexus 7 as it is on the Fire. The only major
exception is Amazon Instant Video, and with Netflix, we can live with that.
So, while we tend to prefer larger tablets that better differentiate themselves from phones, if you've
been toying with the idea of getting a real Android slate but didn't want to spend big bucks for a big
device, this is what you've been waiting for. This is the best Android tablet for less than $200 and the
best budget 7-inch tablet on the market. For the moment. The race to the bottom in the tablet space is,
after all, just getting started and, if the Nexus 7 is any indication of what's to come, we're in for a very
Update: We received some bogus information on the MHL. We've now confirmed that the Nexus 7
does not support MHL, meaning there's no way to connect this over HDMI to get video output.
Tags: 7-inch, android, android 4.1, Android4.1, asus, google, google io, google io 2012, GoogleIo,
GoogleIo2012, ips, jelly bean, JellyBean, nexus 7, Nexus7, review, tablet, video
Nexus 7 review: the best $200 tablet you can buy
Next: HTC One V quietly pops up at Virgin Mobile USA for $200, iPhone tags along for online orders
Nexus 7 (2012) review
The Google tablet that originally took the Android problem into
its own hands
By James Rogerson July 18th
Update: The Nexus 7 has been rebooted and overhauled - so check out our in-depth New Nexus 7
Undoubtedly tired of the struggle against the iPad, Google announced its own branded 7-inch tablet:
the Google Nexus 7 by Asus, complete with stellar specs and a rock-bottom price.
We've now been given a new and upgraded 32GB option (available with or without 3G) to join the
16GB Wi-Fi only offering, with the price not raised above £239, which is hugely impressive for a
quad-core, Tegra 3-endowed tablet with 3G onboard.
It's now been usurped by the new Nexus 7, but this doesn't mean we're not still looking at an impressive
tablet in its own right.
Like other Nexus-branded devices, the Google Nexus 7 tablet isn't actually hardware manufactured by
Google (as you may have noticed, thanks to the suffix).
As the Mountain View company has done with Samsung, HTC and Motorola in the past, Google paired
with Asus to design and manufacture this slender tablet.
15 best Android tablets in the world
It's a smart move: among Android tablets, Asus makes some of the best around, but matching the rockbottom £129 price of Amazon's Kindle Fire while exceeding its meagre specs would be a challenge for
And make no mistake: the Nexus 7 by Asus is more of an effort to stomp out Amazon's unwelcome
(and forked) version of Android, although now it's having to fight the battle against the iPad mini as
That thrown-down gauntlet has been picked up by the Amazonians already though, thanks to the
emergence of the Kindle Fire HD, which offered more storage and similar specs for the same price.
In turn Google has now dropped the price of the 16GB Nexus 7 to £159, ditched the 8GB model
altogether and released a new model with a Kindle Fire HD-matching 32GB of storage, for £199, along
with a 3G-laden 32GB model for £239.
The good news is that very little has been sacrificed along the way, unlike with Amazon's initial
According to Android boss Andy Rubin, Google's profit margin bears the brunt of any sacrifices made,
selling the hardware at cost to get customers to pay for content from the Play Store.
And that's ensured the tablet is selling in droves - millions of the things have shifted, and even months
after it launched, sales are still going strong. You can even get an official dock from Asus, which
debuted at CES 2013, although it's got a rather limited microUSB port and audio line out as it's main
points of sale.
But enough about why and how Google and Asus have released the Nexus 7: is it even worth £159-239
(depending on the model) of your hard-earned cash?
Nexus 7 Google tablet.
The Nexus 7 Google tablet is thin, light and portable with a 7” display and an NVIDIA®
Tegra® 3 quad-core processor running Android 4.1, Jelly Bean.
The long-awaited Google-created Nexus 7 tablet has arrived and it's everything you expected it to be
and more. The 7-inch Corning glass display features a high resolution that's perfect for HD video and
gaming. A 10-hour battery life means you're in for the long haul. And new Android 4.1 Jelly Bean
works alongside an NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor to deliver unsurpassed performance.
The beautiful 7-inch display boasts a 1280 x 800 resolution with scratch-resistant Corning glass
giving you an incredible view of whatever you're looking at while standing up to the wear and
tear of everyday life
The NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor ensures incredibly fast performance, from quick
loading web pages, to an overall smooth and instantaneous user experience
Powered by Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the Nexus 7 gives you smarter notifications, new widgets,
and great customization options alongside faster performance
With up to 10 hours of power when in use and 300 hours in standby, you're set for all day usage
Specifically designed for Google Play, this tablet puts all your entertainment in one place,
including eBooks, TV shows and Movies, Apps, magazines and music
Comes complete with the best of Google's apps, including Chrome, Google+, Gmail, and
With built-in GPS, the Nexus 7 is a great travel companion
Chat with friend and family using the 1.2MP front facing camera
Pound for pound, the Nexus 7 is the best small tablet you can buy. It houses a ridiculously sharp, bright
screen, its gaming performance is second only to the fourth-generation iPad, and as a Google-branded
tablet it will always see the latest version of Android before any other tablet brand.
Also, at $230 (for 16GB), it's still an affordable tablet with one of the highest values in the market,
despite a $30 price hike over the previous generation. The $270 32GB Wi-Fi model and $350 4G LTE
version are even better values, especially compared with similar configurations of the iPad Mini.
Yes, it's not as cheap as some of the top small tablets from 2012, its screen isn't as big as the iPad
Mini's, and Android 4.3 lacks a few useful UI features Samsung plugged into its Galaxy Tab 3.
However, those are only nitpicks considering the Nexus 7's sharp-as-nails screen and blazingly fast
performance. Despite its imperfections, it's the first small tablet I'd recommend and is the current best
tablet value around.
The Nexus 7 shows off its beautifully clear screen (pictures)
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Editors' note: Although CNET's test unit proved free of major issues, some Nexus 7 owners
have experienced a few technical snafus with their devices. For more on these issues, check
At 0.64 pound, the Nexus 7 is the lightest tablet yet, and with a 4.5-inch width when held in portrait
orientation, it's probably the easiest to fit in one hand. It's an extremely simple design, black in color,
and it honestly lacks much in the way of panache. It's a harsher tablet compared with the original, and I
miss the 2012 Nexus 7's soft, much more inviting feel.
The smooth matte finish of the tablet's back isn't as comfortable or as grippy as the soft leathery back of
the 2012 Nexus 7. Also, the new tablet's corners aren't as pleasantly rounded and the Micro-USB port
on the bottom edge sticks out just enough to be distracting when held in landscape mode.
This hopefully gives you an idea of the texture difference between the old and new Nexus 7.
(Credit: Josh Miller/CNET)
The top and bottom bezels span about an inch in length each, and the side bezels are even more
compressed than the original's; however, despite their more slender turn, errant screen taps don't appear
to be a problem.
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Weight in pounds
Google Google Nexus Apple Samsung Galaxy
7 (2012) iPad Mini Tab 3 (8-inch)
Width in inches
Height in inches
Depth in inches
Side bezel width in
Along the right edge are an easy-to-find power/sleep button and volume rocker, and there's a
headphone jack on the top edge. A front-facing camera sits on the top bezel toward the right corner,
and the rear camera rests behind on the backside, nestled deep in the left corner. Also on the back are
two sets of speaker grilles, one near the top and another on the bottom, next to the Micro-USB port.
The Nexus 7 ships with the very latest version of Android (4.3), and to be quite honest, the OS isn't
much different from the previous incarnation (4.2.2). At least not obviously so. For a detailed look at
the updated OS' features, check out our Android 4.3 review.
One of the few notable Android 4.3 additions is the Multi-User Restricted Profiles feature, which
allows you to set up accounts with extremely limited access.
(Credit: Josh Miller/CNET)
The notable new features are Multi-User Restricted Profiles, OpenGL ES 3.0 support, and Bluetooth
Smart. User profiles were introduced with Android 4.2, and the latest version allows you to add a kidfriendly profile that the primary profile controls. The restricted profile will only have access to apps
deemed acceptable and will have no access to the Play store. It's an ideal solution for families wanting
to share a single tablet; however, Google leaves the decision of implementing it up to the developer.
OpenGL ES 3.0 improves polygonal graphics performance and allows the tablet to better handles
effects like lens flares, shadows, and other shader effects. With Bluetooth Smart, the Nexus 7 can
connect to a newer generation of Bluetooth devices as well as transmit metadata like song titles.
I'm a huge fan of close-up pics of tablet buttons. Actually, I'm not, but I liked this particular pic so
much, I married it. That's also not true.
(Credit: Josh Miller/CNET)
The other 4.3 changes are minor or so deep into the back end that most people will never notice the
difference. It's certainly not as satisfying a leap as 4.1 to 4.2 was, and we'll likely have to wait until
Android 5.0 to get some really meaty and truly exciting software upgrades.
The 7-inch Nexus 7 houses a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro system on chip with a quad-core
Krait CPU and a single-core Adreno 320 GPU. It has 2GB of RAM and includes support for 802.11
a/b/g/n (2.4GHz and 5GHz) Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 (including Bluetooth Smart support), and a GPS.
Additionally, a gyroscope, accelerometer, and a digital compass are included as well.
The Micro-USB port doubles as an HDMI port, as long as you have the required (costs about $30)
(Credit: Josh Miller/CNET)
The tablet supports SlimPort, which allows you to use the Micro-USB port as an HDMI port via a $30
adapter, but there is no physical HDMI port on the Nexus 7.
NFC support returns, and we also get wireless charging, which according to Google will allow any Qicompatible charger to fill the Nexus 7's battery. And that does indeed appear to be the case, as the
Nokia Lumia DT-900 wireless charger worked without issue; however, the actual charging speed was
painfully slow compared to a wired charge.
First things first, the Nexus 7's screen is incredibly sharp and text is particularly fine and easy to read.
You may not fully appreciate its high pixel density immediately, but when looking at it next to almost
any other tablet screen, the Nexus 7 clearly comes out on top. It's also one of the brightest tablet
displays I've ever seen. Colors are more accurate and fuller compared with the 2012 Nexus 7 and the
contrast ratio is noticeably higher. Viewing angles are wide and images appear to have a fuller, more
Behold the beauty of the Nexus 7's razor-sharp screen.
(Credit: Josh Miller/CNET)
However, despite its color improvements, the 2013 Nexus 7's screen doesn't represent color as
accurately or vibrantly as the 8-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab 3's, though the Tab 3's screen isn't as sharp.
The Nexus 7's screen looks comparatively greenish when looking at pictures or movies of faces and
sometimes pushes purple when lots of bright colors are in the mix. Most won't notice, but it definitely
stands out with the two tablets side by side.