Google Reveals the Nexus 7: iPad Killer (or Should Amazon be Scared?)

Google Nexus

Some people look forward to the summer because it means the start of camping season or they look forward to working in their yards. Geeks the world wide look forward to the developer conferences. Apple hosted theirs earlier this month and Google begins their event today. We always expect latest and greatest sorts of announcements from these conferences, but this go around Google announced the latest entrant into the ‘iPad Killer’ contest: a 7″ Nexus tablet.

Made with the help of Taiwan’s Asustek Computer Inc., the Nexus 7 runs the Google Android operating system and features the 7″ screen (running at a resolution of 1,280 x 800) that so many tablet users love to hate. Rounding out the feature-set on the Nexus 7 is a micro USB port, 1GB of RAM, a 1.2-megapixel front camera (no back camera), a syroscope, GPS, accelerometer, microphone and 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi. The Nexus 7 is expected to have 9 hours of 720p HD battery life, which is respectable for the size of the tablet.

The real excitement may be that ths tablet will run the newest version of Android which was also announced today: Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

Taking a cue from Microsoft (or was it the other way around), we knew that Google was readying to launch a tablet that they planned to sell direct-to-customers through their own channels (an online store in their case). This move backfired on Microsoft when many of the manufacturers of compatible Windows hardware started bailing ship and/or getting scared when they heard Microsoft would be competiting with them –time will tell whether Google can expect the same backlash.

The Nexus 7 will retail for USD $199, a price-point that says the company that should be scared is Amazon (on the basis of the full-version of Android running on the Google device alone). While I suspect that initial interest in the Google tablet will be significant, Apple hasn’t ever chosen to compete in the lower-end of the tablet market and likely won’t be affected much, if at all.

About Jillian: A professional. A geek. Writer. Music fanatic. Creative. Thoughtful. Programmer. Educated. Outgoing. Thrill seeker. Realistic. Optimist. Clever. Sarcastic. Not typical. Contact me on Twitter: @codeGoddess

  • nd1090

    “This move backfired on Microsoft when many of the manufacturers of compatible Windows hardware started bailing ship and/or getting scared”

    Who bailed out?

    Where do you get these fact-free nuggets?

    There was not one manufacturer that announced they will no longer make Microsoft hardware. All we heard was from Acer that they think Surface will fail and will be a short-term experiment. On top of it – it is not logical that anyone will bail. HP no longer make WebOS tablets – so what will they sell if not Microsoft OS computers? Dell only makes Android tablets for the Asia market – what will they sell if not MS OS machines? Toshiba sells a pitiful amount of Android tablets. Lenovo is the same. Acer is the same. Asus might be the only people that will make more Android tablets than Windows machines – if the Nexus 7 is a success – but at $199 – where are the margins?

    As for Apple not being affected – one suspect that you are again not seeing the big picture. The issue for Android developers was that only phones were successful – with no tablet success – there was very little incentive to write tablet specific apps – between the Fire and a successful Nexus tablet – the situation will likely change for all the people that make Android phone apps to port to a tablet specific app.

    • Jillian Halayka

      Many of those manufacturers you have mentioned have commented publicly that they are concerned about Microsoft now that they are a competitor. What will they sell? Chances are good they will go with Android (if I was placing bets), though I have a few ideas in the back of my head on other options. Nonetheless… everything we are reading about the choices developers are making (myself included) have little to do with the number of phones or tablets running Android. There could be one hundered billion of them out there and it wouldn’t necessarily make a difference if the apps those users are choosing are free (or nearly free). I’m fully prepared to be wrong… but I don’t see this new tablet being at all persuasive to developers unless it somehow evolves the Android app market into being a more profitable one.

      • nd1090

        Show me where any hardware manufacturer other than Acer remarked? They have all been mum on it. I am sure they are pissed – but let’s face, they all went with other OS options and were not loyal to Microsoft – so it’s not that big a deal to expect MS to work on their turf.

        As for going with Android – all these guys already went with Android (except from HP) – and only one of them makes money on it – Samsung (on Phones). Dell tried Android and failed. Acer is doing Android with limited success, the same is true for Toshiba, Lenovo. Asus as I said, might be successful because of the Nexus 7 – but there are no margins for them in Android as there are in the PC world.

        As for the tablet being persuasive for developers – all you need is a successful release – and it becomes persuasive. There are only 50K less apps for Android there are for iOS – even if it was 1 less year in the market – so the platform is very attractive for developers – mostly phones. Currently we have only one moderately successful Android tablet – the Kindle Fire. If there is another – there certainly is more incentive for Android developers to develop for other tablets than Apples. It is really not too complicated.