Google Inc launched a brand new souped-up line of Nexus tablets that will boast a higher-definition 7-inch display screen and a processor that promises to be nearly as twice as fast. Dual stereo speakers have been added for richer sound, and the device’s battery duration has been extended to 10 hours for Web browsing, an increase of about an hour.
However the new line of tablets have been priced a little higher than its predecessors.
A model with 16 gigabytes of storage will sell for $229, a $30 per increase from the current Nexus 7 released a year ago. That’s still 30 percent below the $329 that Apple Inc. charges for its iPad Mini. A comparable Kindle Fire HD tablet from Amazon.com Inc. currently sells for $199. A 32-gigabyte version of the Nexus 7 will sell for $269, a $20 price increase.
Despite the price hike however, tech experts and websites seem to have given the device two thumbs up. Here is what a few of them had to say:
Jacob Kastrenakes of The Verge says that the new device is probably one of the best tablets in its class and gives the iPad Mini and Nook HD some very tough competition:
The new Nexus 7 is about the same size, thickness, and weight as the iPad mini, but it comes in nearly an inch narrower. It also compares favorably to every other major tablet in its size class, coming in smaller and lighter in most regards than both the Nook HD and the Kindle Fire HD. While the iPad mini is wider, it's using that space to fit a 7.9-inch display — but size isn't everything. The iPad mini's display is decidedly low resolution for a tablet, measuring only 1024 x 768. That doesn't mean its display looks bad, but it is likely to pale in comparison to the Nexus 7's 1920 x 1200 resolution, which allows it to play back full 1080p video. The Nexus 7 also beats out its low-priced competitors like the Nook HD and the Kindle Fire HD.
Darrel Etherington of TechCrunch agrees that the Nexus 7 is a superior tablet, but advises a wait and see approach in terms of how consumers are likely to respond to the tablet:
Google has once again tapped Asus as the manufacturing partner for its own-branded tablet, and that’s great news for that OEM as the previous generation was its best-selling tablet by most accounts. The new Nexus 7 definitely pushes the needle over and above the last generation, especially with that screen, but we’ll have to wait and see whether that drives more consumers in its direction, and away from Apple’s comfortable embrace.
Ina Fried of AllThingsD cannot stop raving about the HD screen on the device:
Numbers aside, that means that the Nexus 7 can show movies in full 1080p high definition, a feat Apple’s iPad mini can’t match... in managing to incorporate such a screen, Google now has a strong selling point over both the iPad mini and other Android tablets with lower-resolution displays.
The CNet review is much more measured and even a little sceptical of exactly how great the new device is:
However, you are getting what will likely be the best-performing 7-inch tablet -- at least for a while -- with all the new features that Android 4.3 provides, including wireless charging. Still -- admittedly not having had hands-on time with the device -- I can't help but see this as a much more incremental upgrade than I was expecting. The specs look nice, but there just aren't many features here that have me truly excited.