Google’s Nexus 7 tablet $199 sounds highly attractive, but industry analysts and several potential buyers believe that it misses key hardware features. Others say the search giant’s mediocre effort only intends to perk up its fragmented Android mobile operating system (OS) in an Apple iPad dominated tablet market.
The Mountain View based firm Wednesday introduced the Nexus 7 to a house packed of developers during its I/O 2012 conference. The slate is now available for sale online at the Google Play Store at $199 for the model with 8 GB of storage and $249 for the 16 GB model. Google teamed up with Taiwanese tablet maker Asus to bring the 7-inch Android 4.1 Jelly Bean tablet to the public.
Google Nexus 7 falls in a chocked up tablet market that includes Apple’s prevalent iPad. It also joins a slew of devices that run on various Android OS versions from Acer, Asus, Lenovo, Samsung and Toshiba.
Industry followers and analysts claim that Google seems to follow Apple’s lead with the introduction of the Nexus 7. They think that Android OS can flourish in the tablet market by bringing in hardware, software and services tighter.
The Google Play Store provides apps and games, books, music and movies for Google. Analysts, however, consider the Nexus 7 as a harbinger of danger to the $199 Amazon Kindle Fire tablet. The Fire, regarded as the only successful Android tablet, tightly clamps cloud, entertainment and service offerings.
NPD DisplaySearch senior analyst Richard Shim calls the announcement for Nexus 7 was “out of character”. He says that the Google tablet makes the firm a direct competitor in the electronics hardware industry. This apparently will move forward even as Motorola Mobility builds products such as smartphones and tablets for the company. Google acquired the company for $12.5 billion not solely for expansion, but obviously for its large patent portfolio. The search giant first expressed its intention for a buyout after several OEMs who use Android OS on their devices went under fire from archrivals Apple and Microsoft.
Forrester Research analyst Frank Gillett told PCWorld that Google needs more time to gather up a large following of customers. It is nowhere near the strength of Apple and Amazon’s user base.
Gillett wrote in an email, “Google’s real tablet problem is the lack of compelling tablet-optimized apps and Google has yet to address how to motivate developers to fill the gap. Nor has Google addressed the continuing and growing fragmentation problem where few devices are updated to the current OS, because carriers and device makers don’t push out the new versions or users don’t take them.”
The Nexus 7 features an Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor, a 1280×800-pixel resolution display, weighs 340 g and measures 10.45 mm thick. It comes with standard connectivity options such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, and supports near-field communication (NFC) technology. The tablet also has a front-facing camera and a battery that will last up to nine hours of video playback or 300 hours of standby time on a single charge.