Google Nexus 7 is Google’s first attempt at introducing Android to the tablet market. Logically you would have thought that their main competitor would be the iPad, but oh no. Google labelled their official competitor as the Amazon Kindle Fire which has still not greeted British shores. The Google Nexus 7 is the result of a collaboration between Google and Asus – it worked.
Boasting a 1.2 Ghz quad-core CPU, 416 MHz Nvidia GeForce ULP with 12 cores, 1 GB DDR3 RAM and a battery capable of 9 hours of usage, this is a device for me. It clearly outperforms the unbranded tablets sold in abundance on eBay whilst at the same time keeping to a price tag starting at £159.
Making the decision to purchase Google’s first tablet didn’t take me long – it is a better version of the Amazon Kindle Fire.
This 7-inch tablet is a pleasure to use; it can be picked up with one hand and weighs just enough to feel well-built but not so heavy to be uncomfortable after long periods of use. As a Windows and Apple user the Google Nexus 7 introduced me to the Android UI for the first time and at this stage I must confess the Jelly Bean OS feels far superior to iOS. It is quick. So far the only lag I have experienced has been on content heavy web pages. In terms of everyday use this tablet just makes life easier. It is the first tablet computer I have owned and I can proudly profess to have fallen for the form factor.
That doesn’t mean to say it is the first tablet I have used. The iPad is a superb piece of design but I practically find the device clumsy to use. Its weight makes long reading sessions uncomfortable and attempting to type anything of great length is a frustrating experience. The screen on the iPad is its one redeeming feature but you would expect this from a price tag upwards from £400. Whilst Steve Jobs may not have approved of 7-inch tablets I personally find them far more convient to use.
The Google Nexus 7 has already served me well as an eBook reader, newspaper reader, portable video player and games console. It was designed for consumable content. Although, strangely, this is what refrained me from purchasing a tablet PC up until now.
As a heavy content creator tablet devices have never really interested me. Frequently I used to draw comparisons between netbooks and tablets, finding netbooks the desirable middle ground between consuming and creating content. Now that I have found an affordable tablet simply consuming content isn’t a problem.
There is a downside to the Google Nexus 7, the Google Play store. So far the majority of apps are still optimised for smartphones only. In fact the official Skype app flags the Google Nexus 7 as untested and unsupported! If Google’s new tablet proves to be popular then expect developers to pay more attention to optimising apps for tablets. At this stage the Google Play store is only a partial let down to an otherwise brilliant tablet.