The reviews are starting to come in folks for the brand new Google branded, Asus built Nexus 7 tablet. Most of the tech journalists were busy today at the 2nd Keynote of Google I/O so we'll probably be seeing many more reviews later in the weekend but Engadget did manage to put together their review and in a nut shell they give the Nexus 7 a solid thumbs up.
Now the video above will give you a rundown of some of their observations of the tablet but the review starts out pointing out that the Nexus 7 outdoes the Kindle Fire in every way but one. It has a better processor, a better build, it's lighter, has a camera and better resolution screen than the Kindle Fire, not to mention the full openness of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and all the apps, books, videos and games you care to load onto its memory from anyplace you want. Unlike the Amazon which is locked down to the Amazon.com site and store unless you want to go through the trouble of rooting it. And even then you'll be stuck with inferior hardware at the same price point.
Some particular commendation was reserved for the build quality of the Nexus 7. This feels like one solid piece of hardware. The back has a high quality leathery feel, and even though it is rubber...it was able to fool at least one veteran tech journalist into thinking it was leather. Also garnering high marks is the display. Super sharp at 1280 x 800 pixels and with a resolution of 216 pixels per inch it features really nice off axis viewing angles and super strong contrast and an impressive 400 nits brightness. Also noted with the light weight of only 12 ounces...2.6 ounces less than the Fire which makes a noticeable difference in the hand. The one fault with the Nexus 7 that they could find had to do with the tablets loudness. Those small speakers that are hidden beneath the slit on the bottom back of the tablet aren't going to fill the room like you might like but for personal use they seem adequate.
Of particular importance to myself is the battery life which came in at a really impressive...and a better than reported 9:49 hours on a standard video loop test. That's almost 10 hours folks...enough for a long day of continuous use or two if used moderately. Finally the review goes into some of the software highlights of the new android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS that comes in the Nexus 7. Of particular note is the Chrome browser which is a substantial step up from the standard Android browser many of us have used for seemingly forever. The entire browsing experience improves by leaps and bounds. There's lots more in the written review which I've linked to below but there's no doubt that at least according to the guys and gals over at Engadget Google has a winner on its hands with the Nexus 7.