An HP TouchPad with 32 GB of internal storage takes the tile of “My first tablet computer.” It was an early Christmas gift to myself last year. Compared to the latest offerings, it is a little bit old, but for a device that enables me to step away from my desktop computers and still consume digital content comfortably, it comes in very handy.
I now use it more often than I use my sub-notebook computer, and for a device I snagged for about US $100, thanks to a fireside sale by a local electronics chain, it is a steal. When was the last time you bought a computer for that sum?
But what has all this got to do with the Nexus 7, a tablet just announced by Google at the Google I/O Conference in San Francisco? A connection could be in the price. However, it is just the price, but what you get for the price. At just US $199, the Nexus 7 looks like a good deal.
So what do you get for $199? Plenty!
You see, the Nexus 7 will be powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3 processor, which is Nvidia’s latest and greatest mobile processor. This is the same processor that powers more expensive tablet computers from Acer, Asus and others.
Nvidia’s press statement on this says that the Tegra 3:
features a unique 4-PLUS-1™ quad-core architecture for outstanding performance and exceptional battery life. Tegra 3’s fifth battery saver core shines in everyday functions like email, social updates, watching movies and playing music, while each of the Tegra 3’s four main CPU cores progressively powers on only as needed for demanding tasks, like gaming. Nexus 7 offers up to 8 hours of HD video playback, 10 hours book reading, 10 hours web browsing and 300 hours standby.
That is far more than the similarly-priced and -sized Amazon Kindle Fire brings to the table. (The latest Kindle Fire is powered by a Freescale i.MX50 800 MHz, ARM Cortex-A8 dual-core processor.)
But there is more to the Nexus 7. The KAI platform, on which it is built, includes not just the Tegra 3 mobile processor, but also: “system-level innovations like PRISM – a new Tegra 3 technology that reduces a mobile device’s backlight intensity (and power) while simultaneously enhancing color saturation. The result: undiminished visuals with longer battery life.”
But there are problems. The one issue that I am not able to assess properly until I get the Nexus in my hands, centers on this statement from the press release: “Nexus 7 was made for Google Play.” What can I do with it other than spend time (un)productively at Google’s walled enclave? That is the part I will find out when the device becomes available.
The other issue, is storage. Nexus 7 comes in an 8 GB and a 16 GB edition. Nothing wrong in that, except that there is no SD slot. No SD slot means that you cannot extend available storage space, except store your content on Google’s servers. For me, that is a major issue, but I think that I am in the minority on this one.
Those two issues aside, messing with the Nexus 7 is something I am looking forward to. For the good features that it brings to play, I will be more than willing to part with US $199. Read all about the Nexus 7 here.