Forbes’ Robert Hof observes that for once, an Apple product isn’t the hottest piece of hardware on the scene, with that highly enviable status currently enjoyed by Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet.
Hof declares that Google deserves credit for more than just effective marketing, and that after trying it for several weeks, he can affirm that there’s substance behind why Nexus 7 is the latest hot gadget:
Point: It looks and feels slick and substantial, not quite matching Apple’s standard but mighty close.
Point: The 7-inch size is appealing and convenient, easy to hold it in one hand, and fits in a pants or shorts pockets and purses.
Point: The screen isn’t Retina-grade, but is satisfyingly sharp and bright.
Point: While the app ecosystem isn’t as extensive as Apple’s, thre are still plenty available.
Point: It’s cheap! – at $199, less than half the current $399 minimum for an iPad (2).
Point: Uber-reviewers Walt Mossberg, David Pogue, and MG Siegler all like it, as does almost everyone else.
It’s not all sweetness and light, and Hof notes several Nexus 7 shortcomings as well, such as a cluttered interface, chaotic app organization, configurational angularities, and no rear-facing camera, and in his estimation the screen is just a tad too small.
Nexus 7 Is Only Missing One Thing
The Apple Core’s Jason D. O’Grady thinks the Nexus 7 the best 7-inch tablet to hit the market yet, noting that it’s selling like hotcakes, but suggests there’s one thing that would make it sell even better — an Apple logo.
O’Grady notes that the Nexus 7 is one more reason why Apple should release a 7.85-inch “iPad mini,” with it having become clear that consumers want a tablet smaller than 10-inches, a 7-8-inch tablet being more manageable than a 10-incher that won’t fit in a pocket. He observes that a 7-8 inch device also fits easily in the hand, is less intimidating to novice users, and more appealing to women, kids and people in general who’d rather not wield a full-size tablet, concluding that there’s just something about the 7-8 inch form-factor that works.
Of course there’s the price issue. Even after paying the extra $50 for the 16GB model (strongly recommended), that’s still half the price of an entry-level 16GB iPad 3, and O’Grady observes that you can take a high-end iPad with AppleCare up into the nosebleed-inducing $900 range at which you could buy a pretty powerful Windows desktop or laptop with all the trimmings. Or a car.
However, he suspects that if rumors are true and the “iPad mini” indeed has a 7.85-inch panel, that will provide 36% more screen real estate than the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 (the Nexus 7′s screen area measuring 22 sq. in. vs. a projected 7.85-inch “iPad mini’s” screen area measuring 30 sq. in. according to O’Grady’s calculations) at a likely price point of $299, it will leave those 7-inchers in its dust.
Five Reasons The Google Nexus 7 Beats The iPad
Computerworld’s Preston Gralla says that while the iPad may be king of the tablets when it comes to sales, for most uses a Nexus 7 is a better choice for at least five reasons:
1. More convenient form factor
2. No Big Brother
3. The Nexus is more customizable
4. Better built-in apps
5. You save $300