Google used its I/O Developer conference in 2012 to announce that it was releasing its own Nexus branded 7 inch tablet with the launch of Android (4.1) Jellybean. Taking on the likes of the Amazon Kindle Fire, the Google Nexus 7 which is built by ASUS, took a little while to get into consumers hands after Google initially under estimated demand for its first Nexus branded tablet device. But since then the device has been selling like hot cakes all around the world. I’ve been using mine now for a couple of months now and here is my review of the Google Nexus 7.
What I Like
I think what I like most about the Google/ASUS Nexus 7 is Android Jellybean, but this isn’t just any old install of Android Jellybean, this is the direct from Google no extra manufacturer bits and pieces no custom user interface… nothing and whats great about that, is when Google releases an update you get it straight away you don’t have to worry about Samsung or ASUS or HTC or anyone re-coding and redoing their interface so that you get the update months down the track. This alone puts the Google Nexus 7 right up there with Apple iPad (well i guess now the iPad Mini) as a top Tablet device. One of the other features I really like are could be applied to any device running Android Jellybean is Google Now, this presence awareness integrating your calendar, email, Google maps, and interest is a really great tool bringing a lot of information into one interface.
Now I guess I should talk about the hardware too… The 7 inch form factor is really good size, particularly if you want to read books or magazines or even watch movies on the device. The screen is really crisp especially for the price range it falls into (i mean it’s not a retina display or 1080p HD but it’s very good). It’s very light, barely heavier than your regular smart phone and the plastic tactile back might not look as amazing as other devices makes the Google Nexus 7 grippy to hold or even rest up against things. The Nexus 7 has definitely been designed with practicality in mind.
What I Dont Like
Their isn’t much I don’t like about the Google Nexus 7 actually, but if I had to be really critical I would have like to see 3G in the initial release, I know Google/ASUS have added a 3G model recently, but if the device had an option for a Sim Card I would be able to use more apps while I’m out and about. Also expandable storage, there isn’t an option to add a Micro SD card so you can’t store a lot on the device. It would be great even just to keep some extra HD movies for flights or when your out and about especially in the non-3G version.
It’s really hard to fault the Google/ASUS Nexus 7, if you’re looking for a smaller tablet or even an e-reader, I’d really suggest you look at one for yourself especially if you’ve already got an Android smart phone or even just use Google services like Gmail. It offers more than your typical e-reader for not too much more investment. What I like most of all about the Google Nexus 7 is that as Google releases updates for Android you will receive them on the Nexus 7 unlike other Android tablets where you have to wait and may not receive the updates at all.