Review: Asus Nexus 7 (2nd Generation)

Review: Asus Nexus 7 (2nd Generation)

Back when 7" tablets entered the market, Google joined hands with ASUS, and introduced its player into the market, dubbed as the Nexus 7. Pretty soon, it became one of the best 7" tablets out there. But it wasn't long before other tablets took the lead, including Apple's iPad Mini.

This year, Google had to come up with something to blow others away. Behold, the second generation Nexus 7. Being better, more powerful, faster than its elder sibling, and featuring a premium design, it certainly has an edge over most of the tablets that are leading the market right now. Let's take it apart (not literally, of course), and see what it has got.

Build

In terms of its external look-and-feel, the Nexus 7 gives an initial impression of being a well-designed product. Unlike its predecessor which was pretty much a plastic tablet with a relatively cheaper feel to it, and even looked quite plasticky. The design to weight ratio of the tablet is much better, and makes it easier to hold. Call me a fanboy, but holding it for the fist time made it feel like Google's version of iPad Mini, done well nonetheless.

The back of the device doesn't feel like plastic at all, it gives a soft touch instead, and has 'nexus' and 'ASUS' etched into it. The front is all Gorilla Glass, with thicker bezels on top and bottom (camouflaging the camera and notification LED under it), and thinner side bezels. But even so, it's comfortable to hold the tablet in one hand with the thumb gripping on to the bezel (as long as it doesn't touch the screen).

There's no physical button on the front - the volume rocker and lock button are on the top-right side, with a mic just below it. Apart from that, the top of the device has a 35mm headphone jack, and the speaker grille. The bottom has a micro-USB port and perforations for the other speaker (yes, this tablet has stereo speakers, and they're impressively loud and sound good). There's a front-facing camera just like the first generation model, but this one also features a 5 megapixel rear-camera as well, which we'll talk about later. This is also a unique tablet offering wireless charging (using the Qi standard). Overall, the initial impression of the new Nexus 7 makes it feel like an expensive piece of technology.

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