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A report from Taiwan says that the new Nexus 7 could have launched back in May, but existing first-gen Nexus 7 stock prevented it from happening.

The tablet was not unveiled at the Google I/O 2013 event took place in mid-May, which is what we have expected from Google. But now we hear that in addition to the focus on developers for the event, there may have been a different reason for postponing the announcement and subsequent launch of the device

Google is said to have had concerns over first-gen Nexus 7 inventory, and therefore postponed the launch of the device. In the recent weeks, we’ve seen several retailers slash Nexus 7 prices, a move that suggested they were trying to clear out existing Nexus 7 stock before the new model came along.

The news comes from DigiTimes, a publication that hasn’t always been accurate with rumors from the region, and says that Asus would have wanted the new tablet to ship in the second quarter, in order to bolster its numbers for the period.

Apparently the company has been experiencing some strong competition in the tablet business, facing increased competition from rivals including Acer, Lenovo, Samsung and HP.

The company is said to have shipped 5.7 million tablets in the first half of the year, and wants to sell 6.3 million more in the second half, in order to reach its annual target of 12 million – of those, Asus is expected to sell a total of 7 million Nexus 7 units (first- and second-gen models).

In the second quarter, Asus has apparently shipped 4.2 million notebooks and 2.7 million tablets, or a 10% drop for each product compared to the first quarter.

That said, this is just an unconfirmed rumor at this point. What’s certain is that Google has a special event scheduled for July 24, during which we’re very likely to see the new tablet unveiled – the device is expected to launch in the following days, according to the available leaks.

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