Google(s goog) is widely expected to debut its own Nexus tablet later this week at its Google I/O event, but early details are reportedly leaking out. According to Gizmodo Australia, which received documentation on the device, the tablet is dubbed the Nexus 7 and its price will start at $199 for an 8 GB model. Most of the specifications listed by Gizmodo are in line with reports throughout the first half of this year.
The documentation received by Gizmodo shows that Asus is making the tablet and it will run on Nvidia’s(s nvda) 1.3 GHz Tegra 3 processor as expected. There may be a 16 GB model available for $249. Android 4.1, which we know know to be Jelly Bean, is the operating system and the 7-inch slate will use a 1280 x 800 resolution IPS display. Battery life is expected to be nine hours and there is a 1.2 megapixel front camera but no rear image sensor shown. NFC support is included, per the documentation.
As Google is likely to sell the Nexus 7 directly on its Google Play Devices page — alongside the $399 Galaxy Nexus phone — I anticipate this device to be Wi-Fi only for connectivity. Google could surprise with the inclusion of a mobile broadband radio but if were going to do so, I’d expect the price to be higher. Lack of carrier involvement adds another benefit: Google can push software updates to the tablet directly.
Given that Android 4.0 addressed many of the platform’s user interface troubles, the Nexus 7 may appeal not only to Android tablet fans but even to those who were considering a similarly priced Amazon Kindle Fire (s amzn) or Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet (s bks). If the leaked documents are correct, the Nexus 7 should offer nearly all of the same functionality and plenty more.