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7/26/2013
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Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors

Comparing the mini-tablets? Here are six reasons to embrace Google's latest 7-inch tablet.

Google Nexus 7, Chromecast: Visual Tour
Google Nexus 7, Chromecast: Visual Tour
(click image for larger view)
Google's second-generation Nexus 7 tablet, introduced on Wednesday, delivers significantly better performance than its predecessor and surpasses Apple's iPad Mini in several ways.

The new Nexus 7, known as "Razor," trades its white back for black. No longer two-tone, the 7-inch tablet might not reflect as much light as its first incarnation but it still outshines the competition, at least for the time being. In the coming months, Apple and other tablet makers are likely to respond. But for now, the new Nexus 7 deserves serious consideration if you're looking to buy a 7-inch tablet.

1. Screen
The best thing about the Nexus 7 Razor is its screen. The 7.02-inch 1920-pixel-by-1200-pixel HD display (323 ppi) looks great, provided you're viewing content prepared with a high-resolution screen in mind. It's ideal for gaming and video, thanks to its 16:9 aspect ratio, which is similar to the iPhone 5's. The iPad Mini has a 4:3 aspect ratio, which isn't optimal for HD video but works well for reading ebooks. The crispness of text on the Nexus 7 offers some compensation for its narrower pages.

[ Want more on the Nexus 7 Razor? Read Google Nexus 7 Heats Up Mini-Tablet Battle. ]

2. Price
The Nexus 7 starts at $229 for the 16-GB model. The 16-GB iPad Mini starts at $329, 43% more than the Nexus. Add 16 GB of additional memory to the Nexus and the cost rises to $269. Add 16 GB of additional memory to the iPad Mini and the cost rises to $429. If money is no object, buy both and donate your least favorite to a worthy cause. If money matters, the Nexus 7 is the clear winner.

3. Graphics/Processor
The quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro, which runs at 1.5 GHz, should outperform the older dual-core Apple A5 (1 GHz) in the iPad Mini, particularly with applications that take advantage of Open GL ES 3.0, a new addition to Android 4.3. Even so, outside of graphically demanding apps, processor power isn't everything.

4. Wireless Charging
Charging by cable is not a problem, but it can be a hassle. The Nexus 7 supports wireless charging, so you can put it down on an inductive charging pad and have it charge without attaching any cables. Wireless charging requires extra investment -- inductive charging pads range from $30 to $80 or so online. But you might find it worth the effort.

5. Android
Android 4.3 is the best version of Android yet. For iOS zealots, Android is not an option, particularly with iOS 7 promised in a few months. Personally, Android has grown on me, to the point that I'm content in either operating system. I still find many iOS apps more responsive than their Android versions and prefer the simpler iOS UI conventions, but the relative openness and customizability of Android appeals to me.

6. Google Play
Google Play offers a better purchase experience than Apple's iTunes Store, mainly because it works on the Web rather than in a separate application. Apple has really missed the boat by failing to allow customers to purchase iTunes content directly from the Web.

Beyond these features, the Nexus 7 and the iPad Mini are more or less evenly matched. Both have 1.2-MP front-facing cameras and 5-MP rear-facing cameras. Both support Bluetooth 4.0. Both support dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4G/5G) 802.11 a/b/g/n. Both claim about 10 hours of battery life. Both come with more or less the same sensors. Their respective weights differ by only a few grams. Really, it's hard to go wrong with either device.

If you're committed exclusively to Apple products, well, there's not much that can be said to convince you to venture outside Apple's walled garden. But if you're open to a great Android tablet at great price, take a look at Google's new Nexus 7.

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Mark532010
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Mark532010,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/14/2013 | 4:18:05 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
Slightly behind (I just discovered this thread) but I wanted to mention that my mother was given a Nexus 7 for Christmas and has given up on it. She finds it so confusing to do anything in the OS. Dragging a program to the trashcan never works (it just turns red and doesn't go away), downloading apps don't appear on the normal screens but only on the "everything" screen and dragging them to the normal screens is an exercise in frustration - I have watched her try 10 times in a row to drag an icon between screens only to have it not happen. She manages to turn off the wifi all the time (it is quite easy to do) and then has no clue what to do or why everything fails in strange ways. etc.
Android may be awesome for the young tech-savvy crowd but it is woefully inadequate for people who don't instinctively know how to do things. It didn't even come with a guide, no explanation of what the icons on the bottom meant, nothing. I literally had to google to find out how to delete something. I finally got her an ipad and she is a lot happier (she still has trouble but not nearly so much, it is quite a bit more intuitive)
ChrisMurphy
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ChrisMurphy,
User Rank: Author
8/7/2013 | 6:25:36 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
This is good insight -- i'm right on the cusp of buying one of these two, this downloadable map feature's pretty powerful for a guy who can get lost in the driveway.
mykiralspirelli
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mykiralspirelli,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/1/2013 | 7:56:09 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
As a user of both IOS and Android i can say that they obviously have strengths and weaknesses. I find IOS to be safe and simple, but yet i get frustrated when i want to do certain things that i cannot do on IOS. The whole malware issue on Android is the result of people not being a critical thinker (which in that regard tends to make IOS better as Apple likes to hold your hand).

Android has more overall potential than IOS, but with that said IOS is more simplistic. When i am asked to help a friend or coworker pick something out i tend to utilize their personality as a metric on choosing IOS or Android.

Arguing that IOS sucks or Android sucks is just sweeping generalizations and lack true insight to each of the Operating Systems.

Compare and Contrast comes to mind when talking about which is better and you'll find they both come out as a good choice depending on the consumer.
mykiralspirelli
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mykiralspirelli,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/1/2013 | 7:50:17 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
I think you should stop responding Juno, because all your responses are irrelevant and lack any real insight (let alone a point). Most of us like to use this to talk about the actual article and not throw crap at people like monkeys.
mykiralspirelli
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mykiralspirelli,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/1/2013 | 7:45:42 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
If your going to make comments about an article, then you should be mature and professional about it as this isn't a yahoo article for people to troll. Accusing someone of writing a biased article is your opinion and should be kept to yourself.
Who is to say your not biased in your response accusing Thomas of being biased?
anon3860072
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anon3860072,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/1/2013 | 1:11:57 AM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
iOS users are simply people with too much money to burn. Is there any apps which human beings cannot live without? None. Other than certain apps which iOS users may claim that they cannot live without, many Android (particularly Nexus 7 & II) can do the others better (web surfing, movie streaming, GPS) and at a much lower cost. In fact, even those apps which iOS users cannot live without, these users could be ignorant of the existence of the equivalent Android apps! In all, many iOS users simply purchase iPad mini for the name sake or for the perception.

In this era of consuming, many purchases are not based on factual and the old saying of "value for money". Many people simply have too much money to throw away!
chorlacher175
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chorlacher175,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/29/2013 | 5:25:05 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
People who talk about malware on Android don't know what their talking about. The Google Play store is a great and safe place to buy apps. You can also use the Amazon App Store if you want. There are hundreds of illegal or shady app stores out there, most hosted in Russia and China from what I hear. Those are not the Google Play store and I wouldn't get anything from any of those stores. Google Play is definitely much more advanced than iTunes.
chorlacher175
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chorlacher175,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/29/2013 | 5:22:01 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
It's more like the greatest technology that's known the least about. Most people don't realize that they can use NFC for simple transfers of URLs, contacts, maps, photos, and video. Some of that is not even Android specific...you can send/receive URLs and contacts, possibly more, with WinPhone 8 devices that have NFC! It's quick and easy!
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
7/29/2013 | 4:58:18 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
Note that I was addressing the Web-based purchase experience, not the app quality. There are a lot of apps. I'm sure there are more bad apps for Android than for iOS. That doesn't make the Nexus 7 a bad choice.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
7/29/2013 | 4:50:59 PM
re: Google Nexus 7 Vs. iPad Mini: 6 Key Factors
Good point, only the cellular-enabled version of the Mini has a GPS chip.
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