Google announce refreshed Nexus 7, Android 4.3 and Chromecast

Google have announced a newer Nexus 7 with “refreshed” specifications. The 2013 Nexus 7 features a 1.5GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, 2GB of RAM, where as last years featured a 1.2GHz quad core NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor and 1GB of RAM. Both models feature a 7 inch display but, Google have made this year’s model have a full HD display. The 2013 Nexus 7 has a resolution of 1920 x 1200, vs the 1280 x 800 seen last year. This increased resolution gives the Nexus 7 the best PPI we’ve seen on a tablet so far, including Apple’s Retina Display iPad, coming in at 323, compared to 216 on the older model.

Bluetooth has also been bumped up to 4.0 LE. Both models feature a front facing 1.2 megapixel camera but, Google have added a 5 megapixel camera to the rear. Also included is a HDMI SlimPort and wireless charging capabilities. Cellular versions now support LTE/4G. Despite the bump in specs, Google, or rather Asus who manufactured both Nexus 7 tablets have slimmed the tablet down. It now measures 8.65mm and weighs 317.5g, compared to 10.45mm and 340g. The bump in specs does of course have a knock on effect to the price but, Google have kept it competitively priced. The 16GB version is priced at $230, while the 32GB model will set you back $270, only $30 or $20 more respectively. The cellular model however is $50 more expensive than the current gen Nexus 7 and will cost $350. The Nexus 7 will be available from July 30th.

The 2013 Nexus 7 will also be launching with Android 4.3 installed which Google announced at their breakfast event. Building on the ability to have multiple profiles, Android 4.3 will allow you to restrict profiles from accessing certain content. Most notably this will be used by parents wishing to restrict app usage on their kid’s profiles. Android 4.3 also brings in “Bluetooth smart” also known as Bluetooth Low Energy. We also see OpenGL ES 3.0 High-Performance Graphics which to most users will only mean better video experiences on their tablets and smartphones.

The other product Google announced was Chromecast. A nifty little dongle that plugs into your TV through a HDMI port. It features a stripped down version of Chrome OS but, it’s main use comes in the form of streaming. Chromecast can stream content from your smartphones, laptops and tablets. The three basics are of course included: photos, videos and music but, you will also be able to stream YouTube videos along with projecting your Chrome browser onto the TV. At only $35 it’s going to prove to be very popular very quickly, in fact Google immediately put it on the Google Store and it has already sold out. There was briefly a Netflix promotion where you could get 3 months free, even existing customers, thus making Chromecast effectively only $11 if you factor the 3 months Netflix. Unfortunately due to the high demand, this has already been ended as well.

There’s no word when the Nexus 7 or Chromecast will be released outside of the US yet but, we imagine the Nexus 7 won’t be too long but, Chromecast may be a while longer.

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