Yesterday Google announced the new Nexus 7 device that leapfrogs the iPad Mini, for now. I own last year's Nexus 7, but just pre-ordered a new 32GB WiFi model at Best Buy yesterday and here are seven reasons I made that decision.
The new Nexus 7 comes in 16GB ($229) and 32GB ($269) WiFi models that will be available on 30 July. A LTE model that works on T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon will be available in the future for $349. With my smartphones now all having tethering capability I went for a 32GB WiFi model that you can pre-order at Best Buy now, but am still considering the LTE model too.
Reason #1: I need Android in my life
I use Gmail, Google+, Google Play Movies, Google Maps Navigation, and more Google services on a daily basis and have now integrated their services into my life. I love my HTC One, but as a smartphone reviewer I jump between a lot of mobile operating systems. Having a Nexus 7 gives me a portable, consistent Android companion that helps provide Google services even if I am using a Windows Phone 8 or BlackBerry 10 device for my smartphone needs.
Reason #2: Android OS updates
The new Nexus 7 launches with Android 4.3 and like the previous model and Nexus smartphone line, it will get the next versions of Android first. We will likely see Android 5, aka Key Lime Pie, sometime before the end of 2013 and you can bet the Nexus 7 will get that update.
Reason #3: The price is right
The WiFi only models are $229 and $269, which are more expensive than last year's Nexus 7 offering for a lot more device. When you look at the iPad Mini at $329 and $429 though, the Nexus 7 is attractively priced.
I understand the iPad Mini has a slightly larger display, but the new Nexus 7 blows the iPad display out of the water. You can look at comparable Amazon Kindle Fire HD unit and see they are similar in price, yet the new Nexus 7 offers an optimal Google experience rather than an Amazon one.
Reason #4: 9 hours of HD playback
My daily commute consists of 2 hours of train riding and I can be found on an airplane about once a month. I like renting movies from the Google Play Store and with the 3,950 mAh battery on the new Nexus 7 it looks like I can travel across the country and be covered for entertainment.
Reason #5: High resolution display
The new Nexus 7 comes with a 1920x1200 pixels LCD at 323 ppi, which is a jump from 1290x800 pixels and 216 ppi seen on last year's model. As most of my smartphones now have pixel density like this, my eyes are spoiled by high resolution displays.
The iPad Mini has a 163 ppi display while the iPad 3 that I enjoy using has a 236 ppi display. I can't wait to see the new Nexus 7 display in person next week.
Reason #6: Qi wireless charging
Nokia spoiled me with wireless charging in the Lumia 920 and now I want that in all of my devices. I have three Qi wireless charging pads at home and in the office and find it much more convenient to just set down a device on the pad rather than messing around with a microUSB cable and figuring out which end is up to plug it in.
Reason #7: Stereo speakers
The HTC One is a device that has also spoiled me, with its fantastic BoomSound front facing speaker system. The new Nexus 7 has stereo speakers with Surround Sound powered by Fraunhofer and if it is anything like the amazing sound found on the Chromebook Pixel I will be impressed.
While I use headphones on my commute and airplane, I also often show videos from YouTube and Facebook to my family with my HTC One so having good speakers is important to me as well.
Related ZDNet Nexus 7 articles
- Tech spec showdown: the new Nexus 7 vs. iPad mini
- Google teams with Asus on upgraded Android 4.3-based Nexus 7
- Google Nexus 7 takes over non-essential functions from my smartphone
- Nexus 7 tablet: One week in
- Google Nexus 7: a device that finally raises awareness of the 7 inch form factor
- Ten tips to get started with your Google Nexus 7 tablet