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Nexus 7 Tablet: First Impressions and Video

It’s not just that I’m used to an iPad; this device really seems lighter than it looks. In fact, “It’s light!” is one of the most common refrains I’ve heard around the office today as colleagues have stopped in to check it out.

I’m pretty finicky when it comes to tablet design: I didn’t even want an iPad until the slimmed-down iPad 2 came out. Form factor is also important for a 7-inch device, since there’s little point in sacrificing the bigger screen of my iPad for a smaller device unless that device is slim and easy to hold as well as light. The 12-oz, 0.4-in thick Nexus 7 is the first small tablet I’ve actually wanted to use.

Whether due to Android 4.1’s “butter” project to make Jelly Bean more responsive or the quad-core Tegra 3 processor and 1G RAM, the Nexus 7 is surprisingly speedy for a budget device. Pages and screens usually swipe and display smoothly and quickly, and loading a demanding app such as my Dish Network remote viewer often takes less time than I expect. And I’m not the most patient of users.

I like resizable widgets, being able to rearrange icons within folders, redesigned notification “shade” and other enhancements, including Google Now.

Google Now isn’t Siri, if by Siri you think of an assistant that understands a range of natural language commands beyond informational . Google Now can fetch a lot of general info — sports results, weather forecasts, movie times, movie times; but can’t seem to check what’s on my calendar this week or add an appointment. So, Google Now does well with “Is it going to rain today?” but just sends me to a useless Web search when asked “Do I have any meetings today?” or “What’s on my calendar?”

For the entire story, go to: Sharon Machlis, Computer World


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