Asus have officially announced that the next version of the much loved Android tablet will be hitting the shelves on the 28th August, only a month after its US launch; some of your favourite high-street stores will be stocking it at midnight on the 27th, too, in case you happen to pass at that hour…
Google have been busy cramming more in to the now-114(w)x200(h)x8.65(d)mm slate. It’s thinner, lighter, the only increase being an extra 1.5mm in height. The bezel around the side of the screen has been reduced by 3mm on either side, so it looks more elegant and, presumably, feels even better than its predecessor. Never mind the fact that it would fit more comfortably in one hand.
What else is new?
One of the most eye-catching elements of the new Nexus 7 has got to be the 7-inch HD screen, boasting a new resolution of 1920×1200 with 323ppi. Compare that with the iPad Mini’s 1024×768 resolution on a slightly larger 7.9″ screen, and it’s safe to say… It’s sharp. Very sharp, and reportedly very vibrant with more “true” colours. They’ve also included a 5MP rear-facing camera with the 2013 Nexus 7, giving you even more ways to take advantage of the incredible display.
This camera includes touch-focus, face detection and geo-tagging; not bad considering the first Nexus 7 included no rear camera whatsoever. Otherwise, the front-facing camera remains the same at 1.2MP. In the second version, though, the camera is located off-centre on the right hand side. This is arguably going to be a little confusing and makes those self-portraits we all secretly take harder to align and to get used to.
Google has stepped up the Nexus in the processor department – as was expected – by taking on the same processor that they’ve used in the Nexus 4 smartphone.
It’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4Pro Quad-Core 1.5GHz processor. It now features 2GB RAM, too, as opposed to 1GB in the first version. For the graphic-savvy amongst you, Nexus 7 2 launches with an Adreno 320GPU chip: coupled with the HD screen, movies and games will look eye-popping. This tablet is going to be snappy. Think of Usain Bolt… on fast forward.
Another thing worth mentioning would be a sound upgrade. The 2013 Nexus 7 comes with stereo speakers, a great improvement from the mono speakers in its predecessor. While most of us enjoy music, gaming and film through the comfort of our own headphones, this doesn’t mean that stereo doesn’t go unappreciated, and you will notice the difference.
Your options of storage remain the same, with either the 16GB option, or the 32GB alternative. There’s plenty of room to store your films, photos, apps and other multimedia, but there’s no way of expanding your storage with an SD card. This isn’t dissimilar from other tablets on the market, however.
With its starting price at £199 – 33% more expensive than the original – its enhancements make it worth while. Out of the box it runs the latest Android 4.3 Jelly Bean operating system. Come 28th August, those in the UK can finally enjoy the latest tablet from Google and Asus, with one of the sharpest displays on the tablet market – and plenty more up its sleeve.