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Google Nexus 7 (2013) review

Blows Android competitors away with its great screen, performance and low price
Wed Sep 25 2013, 15:04

Product Google Nexus 7 (2013)
Website Google
Specifications 7in 1200x1920 resolution touchscreen, quad-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2GB RAM, 16GB or 32GB internal storage, 5MP rear-facing camera, 1.2MP front-facing camera, 3,950mAh battery, Bluetooth, WiFi and LTE connectivity, Android 4.3 Jelly Bean mobile operating system, 200x114x8.7mm, 290g
Price From £199


INTERNET GIANT Google made its debut in the tablet market about this time last year with the release of the first Nexus 7 tablet. Thanks to its entry-level price and decent specifications, Google's debut Nexus 7 tablet arguably kicked off the Android tablet revolution as buyers started to opt for the cheaper tablet over Apple's then market leading iPad.

Google clearly is looking to repeat that success with the new Nexus 7 tablet, and given that it has designed its latest tablet with a great screen, a fast processor and a low price, we'll be surprised if it doesn't.

Design
When we reviewed last year's Nexus 7, we were fans of its textured casing. Unfortunately, Google has decided to switch this out for a less visually striking matte black rear panel built from a tough polycarbonate material.

While like the original this still offers plenty of grip and makes the new Nexus 7 tablet comfortable to hold, we rather miss the unique design that featured on last year's model, with its successor now blending in with the huge number of black, rectangular tablets on the market.

Google's new Nexus 7 design

We might have started out with a moan, but the design is not all bad. The new Nexus 7 is much slimmer and lighter than last year's model, measuring 200x114x8.65mm and tipping the scales at 290g. This makes the tablet 2mm thinner and 50g lighter than its predecessor, which doesn't go unnoticed when using the device for long periods of time.

The new Nexus 7 seems rugged enough too. During our time with the tablet the Nexus 7 has been accidentally flung in the air before hitting the ground, and we're pleased to report that it has come out unscathed.

While it's not prone to picking up scratches or bumps, the new Nexus 7 attracts fingerprints and grease, and we found overselves having to clean the device a couple of times a day.

Display
Google was keen to talk up the screen of the new Nexus 7 during its unveiling, touting the 7in 1920x1200 display panel as the best to feature on a 7in tablet.

Google's new Nexus 7 has a 7in HD display

We're not surprised Google talked about it so much, because the screen on the new Nexus 7 is among the best we've used. As well as failing to crack when dropped, the display offers rich colours, crisp texts and Netflix in HD 1080p, which we think is one of the tablet's best selling points.

Unlike most tablets on the market, the Nexus 7 has great viewing angles too, and we were able to continue watching Breaking Bad even when sat at an awkward angle.

Next: Performance, operating system

 

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