Google tablet set to limbo in at low $199 entry point

The Google Nexus tablet will be co-branded with Asus. More importantly, it will be inexpensive at $199.

Google Galaxy Nexus screen.
Google Galaxy Nexus screen. Google

Google will launch a $199 tablet this week at its developers conference co-branded with Asus, Bloomberg is reporting.

This follows a series of reports that have been trickling out for months about a 7-inch Nexus tablet being developed with Asus. The tablet is slated to debut at the Google I/O conference that starts Wednesday.

The one feature garnering the most attention is price. At $199, the Google tablet is $200 less than Apple's $399 iPad 2.

Previous reports have claimed the Nexus device will sport the Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean" operating system, a quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor, 1GB of memory, and IPS (in-plane-switching) screen -- which boasts wide viewing angles.

The $399 iPad 2, by comparison, comes with a dual-core A5 and 512MB of RAM.

The Google tablet is expected, however, to have a 7-inch screen, considerably smaller than the iPad's 9.7-incher (which is also IPS, by the way).

Of course, apps are what matter to many, if not most, people. Though Google claims hundreds of thousands of apps, the iPad has more apps overall and more apps designed specifically for the tablet format, as reviewers are wont to point out.

Other expected Google tablet features include NFC (near field communication), Google Wallet, and Android Beam.

An 8GB model will cost $199, while the 16GB version will still be pretty cheap at $249, according to Gizmodo Australia.

It's worth noting this isn't the first highly anticipated $199 Android tablet. The $199 Amazon Kindle Fire was announced last year to great fanfare and a new Kindle Fire could arrive as early as July.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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