Product Type: Google Tablet PCs / eBook Readers
Newest Review: ... and its user friendly navigation icons. The Nexus 7 has managed to outcompete the iPad mini in terms of portability, with a slightl... more
The best 7'' tablet you can find!
Google Nexus 7
Member Name: junkyardbluess
Google Nexus 7
Advantages: Price, hardware, stock Android
I was looking for a device to read newspapers, PDFs for university and media consumption with a long battery life, all in a compact form as a substitute when I didn't want to take my laptop with me. This led me to the tablet form factor. Now there were basically 4 choices: two for the 10 inch category and another two for the 7/8 inch size, namely iPad (4th Gen) and Nexus 10, as well as the iPad mini and the Nexus 7, because I prefer stock Android.
In the end the Nexus 7 won.
First of all it is a bargain. It is the most affordable of the bunch with great performance, great screen quality with a higher pixel density than the iPad Mini and great viewing angles thanks to the stunning IPS panel, with a responsive digitizer. Secondly, it looks great and feels well-built thanks to the textured back, which probably for many is not as sleek as the aluminum back of the Apple line, but it feels great in your hand and it is fairly smudge resistant.
Next up let's talk about the hardware. The Nexus 7 features a fast quad-core Tegra 3 chip from NVidia with custom a graphics chip. The last bit is negligible, since there are not many games, or apps for that matter, which are truly optimized for the Tegra GPU. But the main chip is nonetheless very zippy, which is a true blessing for Android's latest version Jelly Bean, which is an elegant and polished experience but nonetheless not as optimized as iOS is for the iPad line's hardware. Furthermore, the tablet features a 2 MP front-facing camera which is sufficient for video calls, with average picture quality, nothing special but nice to have. The lack of a back facing camera is something I appreciate, because I'd rather take photos with an actual camera, since even a DSLR is handier than a tablet, but might be a con for some. .
The battery life is superb. It easily lasts 15 hours with average use and Wi-Fi on. When used as a PDF reader and music player it lasts easily two full study days without a recharge. However, when used primarily for streaming high definition videos or playing games, the battery will drain significantly faster.
I already talked about the great IPS screen, with overall great colours and good contrast. However, after a fair amount of usage, especially on hot days, my Nexus 7 tends to have a few yellow spots in the corners. I will send mine in for this, but it might be something to be aware of.
Software wise the Nexus 7 features the latest available release of Android and will be among the first devices to get any new releases. The app support is still not as great as on iOS but has come to the point where there is an app for almost everything. New apps are still first published on Apple's Appstore but will usually find their way to the Google Play Store in a matter of weeks. The Tegra 3 chip handles basic tasks without any hassle, as well as computing and graphic intense tasks fairly well. I say only fairly well, because some games like GTA: Vice City, which is Tegra optimized runs smoothly in full details, whereas a non-optimized game like Real Racing 3 runs smoothly too but only on the lowest details chosen. Most 2D applications, however, run zippy and smoothly without any issues.
In addition to that, it has a very ergonomic form and a light weight, which allow the tablet to be held easily with one hand over a long period of time.
Overall this tablet is the best bargain in the small size category. It delivers great performance with a great built quality for the price. I would definitely recommend this over the iPad mini if you are not already fully committed to the Apple eco-system and on a budget.
Summary: A great little multipurpouseful tablet
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