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Summary:

After a trail of breadcrumb evidence, an FCC certification report indicates that a new Nexus 7 is on the way. The device forgoes an Nvidia chip for Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S600.

google io keynote nexus 7

In the market for a 7-inch Android tablet? The Nexus 7 is now 11 months old and we’ve seen bits of evidence that appeared to signal an updated version of Google’s small slate. Now, it’s an even safer bet that an updated Nexus tablet will be announced soon. Why more certainty? The FCC has certified a new Asus tablet with mention of the Nexus branding — not a guarantee that such a device will go on sale, but a definite requirement and the best indicator yet.

Ironically, it wasn’t even a U.S. news outlet that spotted the FCC testing documents: Notebook Italia got the jump on us all in finding the data. Based on the FCC report, the 7-inch tablet under test uses a Qualcomm APQ-8064 chip, which sounds like the Snapdragon S600 used by the Galaxy S 4, HTC One and LG Optimus G Pro handsets. The tablet will have both a front and rear camera as well as a 15 wHr battery. Versions with Wi-Fi and LTE are likely.

nexus-7-unboxedThere’s no indication of the screen resolution but the Snapdragon S600 is surely capable of driving a 1080p display: It does so for the trio of smartphones mentioned above. However, a panel with 1080p resolution would likely drive the cost up. I still think Google should offer a wider range of new Nexus 7 tablets: some at a lower price with the current 1280 x 800 resolution and higher-priced models with 1080p screens. Call them Nexus 7+ or Nexus 7 HD tablets.

Regardless of what the final product line update looks like, if you’re in the market for a Nexus 7, it may make sense to hold off. Even if you’d rather have the current model, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Google offer it for a lower price as new models fit into the current price points of $199 to $249.

  1. Jeff Kibuule Friday, June 14, 2013

    APQ8064 is Snapdragon S4 Pro.
    APQ8064T is Snapdragon 600. (And yes, the T is very important).

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  2. The Reverend T Saturday, June 15, 2013

    I’m glad they’ll use the older chip – it’ll cut costs. Two resolutions would create confusion – it’s good that they’ll stick with a single resolution (1920 x 1200). They idea of a lower specced Nexus tablet doesn’t seem to make sense – given that the aim of the Nexus is to advance the whole platform…

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  3. That 7″ tablet is so less wide.

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  4. I’ve been looking at the Nexus 7 for awhile now as a stand alone replacement for my phone / laptop for day to day use. I’m a college student and would love to only carry one item with me throughout the day. I think this tablet is the one for me but I’ll hold off until more news on 2nd gen model comes out.

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