Google has touted the original Nexus 7 as a universal success, with Android and Chrome chief Sundar Pichai claiming that since launching the device in 2012, the number of Android tablet activations has boomed from 10 million to a massive 70 million. Pichai said this means that one in two of all the tablets sold in the world runs using a version of Android. But one year on Google is looking to repeat its success as it unveils an upgraded Nexus 7, featuring entirely new internal components and a refreshed exterior design. We've compared the old and new Nexus 7 tablets, to see whether the new model is worth the upgrade.
New Nexus 7: 200x114x8.65mm, 290g
Old Nexus 7: 197x120x10.5mm, 340g
Google has completely redesigned the new Nexus 7, hoping to make it as sleek as its main rival the Apple iPad Mini. The new Nexus is nearly 2mm thinner than the original Nexus 7 and a massive 50g lighter, weighing just 290g.
New Nexus 7: 7in 1920x1200 1080p HD 323ppi
Old Nexus 7: 7in 1280x800 HD display 216ppi
Google made a big furore about the new Nexus display, claiming that it's the first tablet to break the 300ppi threshold, meaning despite its modest sub-£300 price mark when released it should be one of the crispest available. And being able to display a 30 percent wider array of colours than the old Nexus, it should also be far more vibrant.
New Nexus 7: Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
Old Nexus 7: Android 4.2 Jelly Bean (upgrade coming)
The new Nexus 7 will be the first ever device to come with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean installed. But it's important to note that 4.3 is a modest upgrade, only adding a select few features to the OS. Chief of these is the addition of new Restricted Profiles powers. The addition expands the multiple account support added on Android 4.2, letting users create separate rights on each account and letting administrators control which apps and services employees can use and access on shared devices. The only other notable additions are improved text input and faster user account switching options.
New Nexus 7: Quad-core 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4
Old Nexus 7: Quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3
The new Nexus runs using a cutting-edge quad-core 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, which should allow it to easily outperform its Nvidia Tegra 3-powered predecessor.
New Nexus 7: 5MP rear and 1.2MP front
Old Nexus 7: 1.2MP front
The original Nexus 7 lacked a rear-facing camera. Asus and Google said this was an intentional decision designed to help keep the tablet's price down. One year on Google and Asus have rethought their decision and loaded the new Nexus with a 5MP rear snapper.
New Nexus 7: 16GB and 32GB
Old Nexus 7: 8GB, 16GB or 32GB
Google's original Nexus 7 launched with 8GB and 16GB options, and a 32GB version followed later. For its new tablet Google decided to beef up the device's internal storage, offering 16GB and 32GB models. However the storage comes at a premium with the new modeld costing £40 more than their previous generation siblings, with the 16GB retailing for £199 and the 32GB £239. A £299 LTE model has also been confirmed for release in the UK.
New Nexus 7: 3,950 mAh
Old Nexus 7: 4,325 mAh
Google claims that despite featuring a more vibrant display and slightly smaller battery the new Nexus 7 will last a full hour longer than its predecessor. If true this will be an impressive feat. In our review, we found the original Nexus 7 did boast reasonable battery life, lasting a day and a half with regular use and around eight hours with video playback.
The New Nexus 7 is technically a big upgrade. The Google tablet features a significantly better display, more powerful processor and adds a rear-facing camera to the mix. For this reason, while we're sure most non-tech heads who already own a Nexus 7 won't necessarily feel the need to upgrade, we think it will still capture a significant proportion of the ever-growing first-time tablet buyer market.
The new Nexus 7 is set for release in the next few weeks. Check back with V3 then for a full review of the new Google Nexus 7.
Written by V3's Alastair Stevenson
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