Google Nexus 7 (2013) : Affordable Tablet With the Best Performance

Posted by B. Johnson
December 10, 2013 | 0 comments
Google Nexus 7 (2013) : Affordable Tablet With the Best PerformanceHi guys, welcome back!!

Okay, after sharing my own personal reviews about some great gaming tablets yesterday, from iPad Air, iPad mini 2 and LG G2, right now, I think it’s time for Google’s homemade tablet - Nexus 7 - to get showcased on this website.

Actually, it’s a bit weird to say this tablet as Google’s homemade tablet given that Google doesn’t really manufacture this Nexus 7 tablet by itself.

It is Asus that really does almost everything from producing this tablet, manufacturing it, until assembling it as the final product that you can enjoy today on your hands.

Google Nexus 7 (2013) benchmarks and gaming performance

However, Google also must be credited in this matter because Google Nexus 7 is designed by Google itself, in terms of software and hardware optimization, especially with the design concept of this device.

So these 2 companies do really share the loads together on their shoulders when creating this product.

Anyway, in my older previous blog posts, which you might already check out (or not yet), i’ve already discussed a lot about Google Nexus 7.

I’ve also included this tablet in my “3 powerful but affordable gaming tablets” article in my older post, which you'll find this tablet alongside Kindle Fire HDX and Tegra Note as 3 tablets that i strongly recommend to you as 3 low-cost powerful gaming tablets that will still be able to run any high-performance games even in the next 2 years ahead.

That’s why, today, i’m really excited to bring up Google Nexus 7 again in this new conversation.

I just want to show how i’m really impressed with the whole thing about this tablet, from its design, hardware specs, display, performance, battery life and especially its gaming performance.

However, we’ll get more on that later.

In the meantime, let me firstly give you some introduction about this tablet, so you’ll know the history and story behind the arrival of this Google’s tablet.

Introduction

Last year, at Google I/O conference, this search engine giant shocked the tech world with its first ever homemade tablet, Google Nexus 7. Many people back then, especially tech geeks, were really impressed with this tablet.

They were really surprised by how a powerful tablet like Nexus 7 could be priced aggressively by Google for just $199 (the 8GB model).

More amazingly, Google didn’t hesitate to cramp all of high-end quality specs of high-end tablets into the Nexus 7, from an HD 720p display, quad-core processor, 12-core GPU, 1GB of RAM and many more, which were still considered as industry standards by that time.

That first gen Google Nexus 7 is packing some jaw-dropping specs on it, like a quad-core Tegra 3 chipset, 12-core NVIDIA GPU, 1GB of RAM, 7-inch 720p display, Google stock Android OS out of the box and some other awesome specs going on inside the tablet.

However, given its cheap price point, there are some sectors that Google sacrifices on this device, like no supports for microSD card slot and rear-facing camera.

Surprisingly, despite not having those 2 important elements, Google Nexus 7 still impressively sold well on the market, with Google pushing back the shipping dates of Nexus 7 for pre-ordering customers across the world.

Now Google is back again with its second-gen Nexus 7 tablet this year.

The good news is, through this next-gen Nexus 7, Google puts some efforts to address some of the issues that have been plaguing the owners of the first-gen model of Nexus 7, like lack of rear-facing camera and the decrease of performance after several months of use.

The latest generation of Google Nexus 7 now feels much even faster and smoother than the predecessor, yet still delivers full HD 1080p display in outstanding performance.

That’s something that should be appreciated from this new model.

Amazingly, despite using last year’s flagship chipset from Qualcomm, Snappy Snapdragon S4 Pro instead of NVIDIA’s this year flagship, Tegra 4, Google Nexus 7 is still more powerful than last-gen model and can deliver a long lasting battery life all day, despite using smaller battery capacity than last year model.

I think this is an impressive achievement by Google and Asus.

Although i really like NVIDIA’s Tegra 4 more, i also think that Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset on this tablet is amazing as well given that it’s a last year’s flagship processor from Qualcomm but still manages to rival other high-end tablets on the market.

Okay then guys, without further ado, in this review, i want to talk about Google Nexus 7.

However, bear in mind that right now, i don’t actually own the tablet by myself.

So in this “my own personal” review, i just want to show you some of the things about Google Nexus 7 that i personally know from internet, which hopefully can help you decide whether to buy this tablet or otherwise, choose other tablets that are better than Nexus 7.

Pros
  • Support of rear-facing camera
  • Much faster and smoother performance
  • Sharp 1080p display
  • Powerful internal hardware
  • Great design
  • Great gaming performance
  • Affordable to buy
  • Cons
  • No support for microSD card slot
  • Camera takes mediocre shots
  • Not so great as a stylus tablet

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If there is one thing that makes Google Nexus 7 worth buying tablet, then it is definitely its powerful high-end specs.

I think it’s just so beyond amazing to see that with only $229 (which i believe has been cut to $199 for the basic 16GB model on some retailers or online stores), you can get many awesome goodies that you normally see on some high-end devices only.

Can you imagine that a tablet that comes with a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset, 2GB of RAM, Adreno 320 GPU, 1080p display, 16GB of storage and strong battery life, can be had for only $229.

That’s just insane!!

I mean, if you look around some other tablets below $200, then most of these cheap Chinese tablets usually suck in many ways, like build quality, design, performance, hardware, software and many more. But that’s an exception with this Google’s tablet.

Google Nexus 7 is a truly amazing tablet with great build quality and design, plus a beast performance thanks to its high-quality specs.

To be honest with you, this always makes me blown away everytime i see an insanely powerful tablet like Nexus 7 can be priced at affordable cost like that.

Talking about the entire specs of this tablet, Google Nexus 7 comes with a 1080p display (1200x1920 pixels with -323 ppi pixel density), a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor clocked at 1.5GHz Krait per core, 2GB of RAM, Adreno 320 GPU, 3950mAh battery and Android 4.3 out of the box.

Some of these specs kind of remind me with the specs of Google’s other Nexus device.

And that is the LG Nexus 4, a last year’s Nexus phone from LG and Google.

LG Nexus 4 comes with the same exact package like Snapdragon S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM and Adreno 320 GPU.

So you can expect that Nexus 7 tablet will be as fast as LG Nexus 4, or even much faster than this Nexus smartphone.

With all of these goodies, there is no doubt that Google Nexus 7 will be a great device, if not perfect, for enjoying multimedia contents, like watching HD movies, listening music, reading books, browsing internet and playing games.

I actually think that this second-gen Nexus 7 is more than capable in handling any kind of high-performance 3D games on Google Play Store so perfectly and smoothly, even the ones that are gonna launch in the next 2 years.

Design

Something that captures our attention when looking Google Nexus 7 at the first time is its gorgeous design.

Despite using some plastic material all over its body (unlike iPad mini that has solid premium aluminum material), this tablet surprisingly looks really awesome and feels great in hands, thanks to its texture finish on the back.

The design of Google Nexus 7 is a huge departure of last year’s Nexus 7, where the second-gen model doesn’t use that metallic trimming on the side and huge bezels anymore.

Instead, that metallic trimming has been altered by Google with solid dark trimming and the bezels on left and right sides have been reduced quite a bit.

And as a result, new Google Nexus 7 looks more elegant and cleaner than the old-gen model.

So overall, with only $229 price point, i think the design of Google Nexus 7 still stands out among other tablets in that price range, like Kindle Fire HDX or Samsung GALAXY Tab 3.

Hopefully, in the future when the next-gen model of Nexus 7 arrives, Google will improve the design of its tablet and even challenge itself to bring premium material to the tablet, making it competitive against other premium tablets like iPads or LG G Pad 8.3.

But for now, i think the design is still acceptable for that price point. It still looks solid and elegant, but feels comfortable to hold in hands,

Display

If there is one thing that becomes the selling point of Google Nexus 7, then its screen is definitely the one that we should bring up to the table.

The display of Nexus tablet is gorgeous. No argue to that. It’s really mind blowing to see how $229 tablet like this can deliver such as sharp full HD 1080p display to the users.

This is something that is really rare to see on the market right now, although more and more 1080p display tablets with low price tags are starting to become familiar to see on the market right now.

Google Nexus 7 is packing a 7-inch display with the resolution of 1200x1920 pixels with pixel density of -323 ppi.

So as a result, the display of Google Nexus 7 looks really gorgeous and amazingly sharp.

I’ve actually already seen some of screen tests between this tablet against iPad mini 2 with retina display that comes with much higher 1536x2048 pixel display.

And impressively, Google Nexus 7 manages to match and even surpass the screen quality of iPad mini 2, which is so shocking given that the 1200x1920 pixel resolution on Google Nexus 7’s display is lower than iPad mini 2’s 1536x2048 pixel display.

So that’s just how amazing Google Nexus 7 really is. Even with its lower screen resolution, this tablet still manages to rival more expensive tablet like iPad mini 2 in that regard.

Back to Top
When it comes to performance, then no one should ever underestimate Google Nexus 7.

Despite using last year’s flagship chipset from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon S4 Pro on Google Nexus 7 still delivers an outstanding super-fast performance to the users.

Compared to last year’s model of Nexus 7, then it’s no doubt that the second-gen Nexus 7 will outperform the predecessor in that sector.

This actually comes at surprise given that the second-gen Nexus 7 doesn’t use Qualcomm’s flagship chipset of this year, Snapdragon 800, which comes packed on Kindle Fire HDX 7-inches and 8.9-inches.

But it’s still able to bring smooth and fast performance to the tablet.

And more amazingly, i personally think that when compared with Kindle Fire HDX, i personally think that Google Nexus 7 is a much better tablet in performance than Amazon’s tablet.

The reason to back up that argument is because, Google Nexus 7 is using a stock Android OS just like any other stock Android tablets out there.

So you’ll be able to use widgets, apps, shortcuts or live wallpaper on the homescreen, allowing users to get the freedom to personalize their tablets.

And this contradicts with Amazon’s tablet.

As we all know already, Kindle Fire has been popularly known for its Amazon’s homemade Fire OS (which is based on Android OS), which limits users from personalizing this tablet with their own preference.

So as a result, on Kindle Fire tablet, you’re not allowed to add widgets or to change the wallpaper on the homescreen of this tablet, let alone to use the live wallpaper.

And this kind of sucks because most of Kindle Fire users will be forced to use some boring User Interface without having the control to personalize their tablets. Kindle Fire HDX is no exception.

This tablet still inherits the same limitation for users from customizing this tablet just like the predecessors.

So you can’t add widgets on the homescreen or change the wallpaper, unless you finally decide to use some custom ROM from XDA forum developer.

With that being said, then in my own personal opinion, i think Google Nexus 7 is still a better tablet than Kindle Fire HDX, in terms of performance and user interface.



Anyway guys, if you want to know more about the gaming performance of Google Nexus 7 (2013), including what games that will run on this tablet, check out my YouTube video playlist or Pinterest page. :)

Camera

One of the great things that you’re gonna get if you choose to buy Google Nexus 7 instead of Kindle Fire HDX is the support of rear-facing camera.

The quality of 5MP camera on Nexus 7 may not be on par with the 5MP camera on iPads (which is the best camera on tablet), so there’s nothing to write home about this camera.

However, it’s good to hear that this tablet now comes with that rear-facing camera, which has been lacking on the first-gen Nexus 7.

When it comes to quality, the camera on Nexus 7 takes mediocre shots. So you can’t expect anything spectacular from this camera. At least, it will get the job done whenever you don’t bring your digital camera or your smartphone camera at your disposal.

Besides, for a $229 tablet, the 5MP camera on Google Nexus 7 is not really that bad for that price point.

Actually, i think it even surpass my expectation for an affordable tablet like that.

But next year, when the next-gen Nexus 7 arrives, i really hope that Google will improve this sector and bring a much better quality camera to the users.

Battery Life

Battery life is one thing from Google Nexus 7 that manages to really impress me a lot with this tablet.

Despite using a smaller 3950mAh battery capacity, many users of second-gen Nexus 7 feel that the battery life of this tablet is insanely powerful and could even last around 8 to 10 hours in heavy usage.

I believe Google has made some tweaks here and there on the software and hardware in order to optimize the battery life of this tablet.

This is a great achievement by Google and Asus.

Actually, this same success has also been gained by Apple through its iPad Air that comes with a slightly smaller capacity of battery (8820mAh) but still manages to deliver outstanding performance in full HD display and could even last in 2 days in heavy usage.

With that being said, then Google Nexus 7 is no doubt a really great device for gaming.

It already has some powerful hardware specs, like Snapdragon S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM, Adreno 320 GPU and 1080p display, and the most importantly, its battery life could last around 8 to 10 hours in heavy usage.

So if you’re looking for a really powerful gaming tablet at low cost, then i really recommend Google Nexus 7 to you.

I believe this tablet will still be able to run any high-performance 3D games even in the next 2 years ahead, like Modern Combat 5, N.O.V.A 4 (not confirmed yet), GTA San Andreas (comes in December), next Gangstar game and other graphics intense games that will launch next year or the next 2 years.

Conclusion

So to sum this up, at that $229 price point, it’s really hard to not recommend Google Nexus 7 to you.

It is a perfect tablet at that price range.

It’s great for watching movies given that it has full HD screen. It’s great for browsing the net given that it has fast performance and much-improved Google Chrome browser.

It’s great for gaming given that it has a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM and Adreno 320 GPU.

And overall, this tablet is just great for any other things, like reading books, listening to music and many more.

However, Google Nexus 7 has a tough rival in that price range. And that is Kindle Fire HDX and Tegra Note. Kindle Fire HDX 7-inch can be had for the same price $229, while Tegra Note can be bought for just $199.

Kindle Fire HDX has a much better hardware specs (Snapdragon 800, Adreno 330 GPU) compared to Google Nexus 7’s Snapdragon S4 Pro and Adreno 320 GPU.

Meanwhile, at cheaper price tag than Nexus 7, you can also pick Tegra Note as a great alternative.

Tegra Note comes with Tegra 4 SoC, meaning that this tablet is able to deliver a much better graphics performance when playing games than Nexus 7 (more detailed and well-polished graphics and visual effects, more textures, etc).

Tegra Note also has some other goodies that simply can’t be found on Nexus 7, like:
  • microSD card slot,
  • a better camera,
  • Awesome Camera app,
  • a better stylus (that matches the quality of Samsung GALAXY Note’s stylus, even outperforms it),
  • stylus official apps for drawing and writing notes,
  • TegraZone app that allows users to get the access for many well-optimized games for Tegra device
  • and many more.
Tegra Note may have some lower specs than Nexus 7, like 1GB of RAM and 720p display, compared to Nexus 7 that has 2GB of RAM and 1080p display.

However, at that cheaper price point, you’ll get more goodies than Google’s tablet, like microSD card slot, stylus, great stylus apps, great stylus touch response, a better camera and a much better performance.

So if you’re still confused to choose between Google Nexus 7 or Tegra Note, i recommend you to list some of pros and cons of each tablet.

And then, pick one of them that can really suit perfectly with your needs.

But if you ask me, then i would definitely recommend you Tegra Note instead of Google Nexus 7.

It has the latest mobile processor from NVIDIA, while Google Nexus 7 still uses last year's flagship processor from Qualcomm.

So it's up to you now.

Disclaimer: Hi guys, bear in mind that this is not some in-depth review. So this is just like Read more...
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