Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet is a very interesting device, and one I think Google hopes will accomplish a number of objectives. Primarily, I think it produced the Nexus 7 in order to prove that Android tablets really can be good even with a cheap price, and to launch Jelly Bean into the spotlight. An ulterior motive, however, might be to dethrone the $199 Kindle Fire as one of the top Android tablets, since it doesn’t even run a recognizable version of Android. Whatever Google’s reasoning for making the tablet, it certainly has the potential to be a great device. So, when my preorder arrived at my door just yesterday, I was eager to open the box and take a quick look at Google’s latest project.
The box actually comes in two pieces, and the colorful cover on the left slides off of the regular black box to the right. Of course, this isn’t as interesting as the device, but I would like to point out that Google and Asus have done a good job making packaging worthy of a quality device.
Since the Nexus 7 sits at the top of its box with the accessories under it just like any other device, I’ll forego posting that image. Instead, in the image above you can see the Nexus 7 still wrapped in plastic, as well as the meager accessories (just an AC charger and USB cable) that came with it.
Within about ten seconds of taking the plastic off of the tablet, I noticed what is sure to be a big issue for some users: sunlight visibility isn’t very good at all on this tablet, and as you can see it has all kinds of glare. I will admit, however, that the glossy black buttonless front with a silver bezel looks quite nice in terms of design.
The back of the Nexus 7 is made from an interesting rubberized finish that doesn’t quite feel like rubber. It’s almost a bit like leather, but either way it feels good in the hand and provides plenty of grip. The pattern also seems to match the Galaxy Nexus back cover, if only a little. It is also worth noting that the Nexus 7 is a bit thicker than I imagined it, not enough to be a problem, but certainly not as thin and light as something like the Galaxy Tab 7.7.
I haven’t used the Nexus 7 for very long, but I do have a few preliminary opinions: First off, this tablet is actually one of the first that I can see myself really using on a daily basis for both media and light productivity. Also, Android 4.1, even the phone version, is pretty well suited to tablets of this size. Luckily, I also haven’t had any issues with screen lift either, and build quality seem top notch so far. Of course, it will take me a bit longer to form my final opinion of the tablet, so stay tuned in the coming weeks for the full review.