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Google Nexus 7: All we know about Google's long-rumored tablet

June 19, 2012

As you may have noticed, most of the time, rumors about upcoming Android devices tend to contradict each other. So, considering that a possible (and quite probable) launch of a Google Nexus tablet would be one of the biggest launches of the year, it’s funny how almost all of the numerous leaks and rumors about the Google Nexus 7 seem to paint an uniform image of its specs, price point, and release date.

In fact, most of the information we compiled in the Nexus 7 rumor roundup that we published back in February still seems credible. There are however some new and interesting developments that paint an accurate picture of the long rumored Nexus tablet. Let’s check them out together.

First Rumors

Back in February, both Digitimes and reported that ASUS will be partnering with Google to release a quad-core, 7-inch, WiFi-only Nexus Tablet, one that would be aggressively priced at around $200. Obviously, once the online tech media got hold of the rumored price and specs, the Nexus Tablet was pegged as a direct response to the Amazon Kindle Fire, the best selling Android (the Kindle Fire actually runs on a forked version of Android) tablet ever designed.

In the following months, more and more rumors have come to add weight to the previous reports, although there was no actual evidence to add to the Nexus tablet folder.

ASUS MeMo 370T

The ASUS Memo 370T

Interestingly enough, in March, several reports pointed out that the Asus Memo 370 T (a quad-core, 7 inch tablet priced at $250 that the Taiwanese manufacturer has unveiled at CES 2012 back in January) is the perfect proof that ASUS is up to the task of delivering an affordable Nexus tablet. Since the official unveiling of the Memo 370 T, ASUS did not even mention their mid-range ICS tablet. Some believe that all Google will do is re-brand the tablet and be done with it, although a recent FCC filling seems to point out that ASUS will still want to commercialize their own-branded version the Memo 370T. To add to the speculation, a Digitimes report from today suggests that Asus’ own affordable Tegra 3 powered device will come in August, at an incredibly affordable $159-$179.

The Asus Memo 370T specs are exactly the specs that everyone seems to expect from the Google tablet:

  • 7-inch IPS display running a pixel resolution of around 1280 by 800
  • Nvidia Tegra 3 SoC
  • 1.3GHz quad-core processor
  • 1GB of RAM

Google Nexus Tablet release date rumored for June, in stores in July

The entire idea of a Google Nexus tablet was considerably solidified in April, when Google CEO Larry Page announced that the search engine giant will be focusing on the “lower end” of the tablet market, although he did no explicitly mention any Google plans to release such a tablet.

During both April and May, a multitude of reports claimed that the Nexus Tablet will be unveiled at the Google I/O conference in late June and become commercially available in July, although the production stage was originally scheduled for May. It’s safe to say that if Google will release a Nexus Tablet during this summer, it will most likely be at the major event of the year, Google I/O.

Recent Developments

At this point, I should mention that there is one very important aspect that not all reports agree upon: the Android version. According to most of the rumors, the first Google-branded tablet will run on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which makes a lot of sense, as ICS is the first smartphone/tablet unified version of Android.

On the other hand, some claim that the Nexus tablet will come with Android 4.1 Jellybean, as benchmark results that leaked in late May seem to indicate. Strangely enough, this also makes sense, considering that all Nexus smartphones have been used to launch new versions of the OS.

(Note: The benchmark result I’ve mentioned earlier has also raised a lot of questions regarding the aspect ratio of the screen, read more here!)

Recently, Business Insider has also jumped on the Nexus tablet rumor bandwagon when they have announced that Google will indeed release their first tablet at Google I/O .

Finally, during Computex, an anonymous ASUS official has tipped the Android Authority staff byconfirming that the ASUS-built Google Nexus tablet will be released at the end of this month, although unfortunately, he did not share any other detail!

But we got more details from the EXIF information of a couple of pics uploaded on Picasa, which indicate that the Nexus 7 will only come with a front-facing camera. Also, Digitimes chipped in with more confirmation that the device will sell for $199 and reach the consumer’s hands in July.

As a conclusion, I would like to remind you that it’s very rare that a multitude of sources point towards the same details regarding such a major launch. Fortunately, those of us that are impatiently waiting for the Nexus Tablet have only a couple of weeks of wait ahead. Google I/O takes place June 27th – 29th, 2012.