The Google Nexus 7 (2013) is powered by a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor with 2GB of RAM, and comes in either 16GB or 32GB storage. LTE is said to be available shortly after launch date.
Although the CPU is adequate for today’s standards, it’s not the best available — the Snapdragon S4 Pro is a step behind the Snapdragon 600 which you can find in the Galaxy S4 and HTC One so it’s something to keep in the back of your mind if you are the type who worries about “future proofing.” But if you think about it, you get a lot already for what you are paying for out of the Nexus 7.
Navigating through the Android 4.3 interface is snappy and smooth and apps open quickly without any noticeable lag. In Quadrant, the Nexus 7 scored 5558, which is a few steps behind the Galaxy Note II but as most of us know, Benchmarks don’t really mean anything to real world usage.
Surfing through websites in Chrome, opening multiple tabs with Slacker Radio playing in the background, sending emails, and switching in between apps was no problem, as I experienced no lag or any slowdown. Watching videos in Netflix and CrunchyRoll look great and ran smooth without any stuttering. Games looked and ran amazingly well on the Nexus 7, which took every game I threw at it ranging from Sonic the Hedgehog 4, Dead Trigger, and even Riptide had no issues.
The new Nexus 7 is the first device to be shipped with Android 4.3, which looks and runs essentially identically to 4.2.2 and retains the “Jelly Bean” code-name. Just be glad that Google didn’t have the audacity to call this Android 5.0 (Key Line Pie)!
Android 4.3 introduces a few features such as Multi-User Restricted Profiles, OpenGL ES 3.0 support, and Bluetooth enhancements. Multi-User Profiles allows you to add a restricted profile (primarily a kid-friendly profile) which lets the user only access apps that are “acceptable” and locks out the Play Store. OpenGL ES 3.0 improves graphical performance especially for games enhancing the shadows and shading effects. The Bluetooth enhancements include Bluetooth Smart, LE and AVRCP 1.3, which add new possibilities and connectivity to a new generation of devices.
One thing that really stands out is that Android 4.3 adds TRIM support, which solves the problem of Android tablets getting sluggish over time. If you upgrade your previous Nexus 7 or other Android device to 4.3, you will notice that it was as fast as the day you got it. Adding TRIM is a nice touch to the new operating system.
Since Android 4.3 is relatively new, there may be some apps that may not work so well with the operating system, but I have not run into any issues so far. Also, some app developers need a little time to tweak their programs to work properly.
After a week of testing the Google Nexus 7 (2013) for both work and play, being unplugged at 7AM and then back in the charger at 11:30PM results in an average of 25% – 30% remaining at the end of the day. Other Nexus 7 owners have reported that it lasts around 11-12 hours.
Overall in real-world usage, you should have no problems having this last an entire day.
You’re not done yet. Part 3 has our conclusions on this tablet.