After working on the Nexus 7 with Google, ASUS went on to release its own very similar tablet, the MeMO Pad. At $150, but with slightly lower-end specifications than the Nexus 7, the tablet was never really a big hit despite its competitive price point. Today, ASUS has updated the MeMo Pad to better compete with the range of other small tablets, and the budget offering is actually beginning to look more appealing as a mainstream Android tablet.
The changes to the new MeMO Pad HD7 are minimal, but together make for a much better device than the previous version. The MeMO Pad HD7 now has a 1280 x 800 HD IPS display, 5MP rear camera in addition to the front camera, and a quad-core A7 CPU. Almost more important than the specs, the new HD7 will be available for $129 or $149, for the 8GB and 16GB versions respectively – but unlike the Nexus 7, the MeMO Pad has expandable microSD storage capabilities.
It is important to note that the quad-core A7 CPU in the MeMO Pad will be slower than the Nexus 7’s A9 unit. The plastic casing also looks less impressive than the Nexus 7’s soft touch finish, and the ASUS tablet will have ASUS’s own customized version of Android. Still, the HD7 is a relatively impressive tablet for the price, and even includes Bluetooth 4.0 and GPS connectivity.
Ever since my Nexus 7 broke, I’ve been waiting for Google to release a successor like the one that was predicted for Google I/O, but as Google hasn’t yet released an updated tablet I’ve been looking at other options. While I could repair the display on my Nexus 7 for $100, the MeMO Pad HD7 could be mine for $129, and should be nearly as good. Since ASUS didn’t give a specific release date for the tablet I have a little while to make a decision, but unless Google releases a new Nexus 7 in the near future, the MeMO Pad HD7 should remain a viable option.[The Verge]