It's not going to be easy bringing something new to the Google Nexus 7 review party, but I will have a go. I will also split this review into parts, something many of you don't like, purely because of how the timing works out.
The Nexus 7 is being talked about absolutely everywhere and it seems as though people are hoping for it to be a success for a number of reasons; the iPad is dominating the current tablet market and people want to see that stop, the Nexus 7 is priced at a level that many more people can afford and a lot of people just don't like Apple. It is being spoken about as if it is a remarkable piece of work that brings something new to the world of tablets and my job is to decide if that is true or if these thoughts are guided by the price.
In the box
The Nexus box is just a box, there is nothing particularly special about it and the same applies to the accessories. You get a charge-sync USB cable and plug that looks as though it was made by HTC, a tiny manual and that's you lot. No headphones, no case and no extras which will dissapoint nobody because of the price. We don't tend to expect extras these days and even when we do get them, i.e. headphones, they are usually replaced by accessories that actually work.
So that's the box- nothing much to say about it, but it doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things.
The Nexus 7 looks like many other Android tablets, particularly the Galaxy Tab 2, and at first glance has little to part it from the raft of competing products in this area. The back, however, is grippy and gives the impression that you can carry this thing anyway and not worry about it getting damaged as so many other products fail to do. As great as the iPad is, it does feel like an object that is not up to the rigours of daily life and this can greatly impact how you carry it and use it every day, it does for me.
I was unfortunate enough to get one of the loose screened models and so had to go through the DIY fix or prizing the back off and gently tightening the screws to get things back in place. This gave the tablet a feel of decent build quality and a solid one-piece unit, but this problem of loose screen is quite common and a flaw in the production process.
The screen surprised me in two ways. It works very well in bright conditions and, perhaps more surprisingly, is not prone to fingerprints. I have never seen a tablet that manages to deal with fingerprints as well as this one and when paired with the grippy back, I have to give Google a thumbs up in the practicality area.
This part of the review was only written after one day so I don't have much to say, but I am pleasingly impressed with the Nexus 7, but perhaps not as much as others who are detailing it in their reviews as a magical object. I will ignore the price, if I can, throughout this review because the price never matters when deciding if a tablet is good or not.