Prizefight: Google New Nexus 7 vs. Apple iPad Mini
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Prizefight: Google New Nexus 7 vs. Apple iPad Mini7:15 /
It's a throwdown showdown between the cream of the crop for 7-inch tablets. Google keeps pushing the envelope with the New Nexus 7, so how does it stack up to the iPad Mini this time around? Let's get it on!
-What's up, Prizefight fans? I'm Brian Tong and the 7-inch tablet category remains one of the hottest right now, so we're throwing in the top 2 big boys. It's a Prizefight punch-out between Google's New Nexus 7 and Apple's iPad Mini. Our judges for this fight, our senior editor, Eric "The Tank Man" Franklin, senior editor Donald "ring my" Bell, and you know who, "Ring-a-ling-a-ding" Tong. Now we'll take all three judge's blind scores and average them out to the nearest 10th of a point. The final Prizefight score will be an average of all rounds using the same system. Let's get ready to rumble. Round one is design. The New Nexus 7 brings a thinner and lighter design at 290 grams that weighs less than the iPad Mini with a thinner bezel, but we all miss the leathery feel from the first generation. Now, the biggest change is its 7-inch full HD 1080p display that's the highest resolution on the market for a tablet this size and it's even brighter than the current iPad Mini. Now the iPad Mini brings Apple's superior design with an all metal body construction that weighs more at 308 grams. It's still a beauty, but it feels a little less inspired compared to other Apple products. It brings a robust 7.9-inch display that's larger in size, but its biggest drawback is its 1024 x 760 resolution and that just doesn't cut it anymore. Don't blink, but the New Nexus 7 takes this round with a 4.3 and the iPad Mini gets a 4. Next round's controls and user interface. The New Nexus 7 brings the latest pure Jelly Bean 4.3 experience with multiple users and restricted profiles for family members. It's super clean and snappy with android's customization for widgets, creating folders, and the ability to create folders directly in the dock. Notifications are still a staple here and swiping from the top right gets you quick access to your key settings. The iPad Mini brings iOS 6 and no one will argue it's still the easiest pick up and play interface on planet Earth. The home button has multiple functions to access current apps and a few basic settings or you can hold it for Siri. You'll also have a notifications pull down, but its lack of customization really hurts it and even iOS 7 won't radically change that when it releases. Google gets a perfect 5 and Apple gets a 4. So after averaging two rounds, the New Nexus 7 leads big. Next round is features. Both tablets bring Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and 4G LTE options, but you won't find any memory expansion slots here. The New Nexus 7 comes with 16 or 32 gigs of storage and a Quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor that delivers, but we're talking about the most feature-packed 7-inch tablet here. Google Now's voice search and commands are unmatched in speed and accuracy. Google Maps is the killer app and is still more trusted than Apple's. You'll have gesture typing by tracing over letters to make words. Android Beam brings NFC capabilities and you can now stream some of your content wirelessly to a television set with the Chromecast. It brings significantly better speakers on both sides with a technology called Surround Sound that no current iPad has and the New Nexus 7 can even support wireless charging. Now the iPad Mini comes in 16, 32, 64 gig flavors with an older A5 dual- core processor that was criticized when it first launch. Siri has a prettier interface when you're looking for sport scores or restaurants, but Google Now is just better and Apple's Maps is still improving but still trails behind. You can view the content that's on your iPad Mini to a television set that's connected with an Apple TV if you live in the Apple ecosystem and it's that ecosystem that's Apple's strongest feature with its app store that really has the most tablet dedicated apps. The New Nexus 7 shines here again and takes another perfect round with a 5 and the iPad Mini gets a 4. Next round is web browsing and multimedia. Google's New Nexus 7 brings the best mobile browsing even without Flash support with Chrome that has features like an incognito mode for private browsing and syncs your bookmarks across devices. Now the iPad Mini brings Safari which is just as solid with a snappy pinch and zoom. It also has Cloud synching of bookmarks on other i-devices and a clean reader mode, but Chrome works on both platforms and it's our browser of choice. Now video quality looks great on both devices, but the New Nexus 7 clearly has the edge when it came to NetFlix and YouTube streaming with its brighter and significantly higher 1080p resolution screen. The gap between the iTunes Store and Google Play Store is really close, but Apple still brings a little more exclusive content overall. Both tablets have front facing cameras and a 5-megapixel rear cameras that shoot 1080p video and continue to usher in the-- -Oh, give it to me. Oh yeah, baby. -take pictures with your tablet movement. This round is all about the screen and Google gets its third perfect round with a 5 and the iPad Mini gets 4.3. So after averaging four rounds, the New Nexus still leads big. Round 5 is performance. Both of these tablets feel fast and snappy and the Nexus might be a tad bit snappier, but there's no major noticeable difference. We've talked enough about the screen, so let's get to the battery life and in CNET's video playback drain test, the New Nexus 7 gave us an impressive 11.4 hours of video playback, just a bit behind the iPad Mini which still boast an industry best, 12.1 hours of Apple juice for a 7-inch tablet. Now in an ideal world, we'd want the most pixels and the best battery life, but we also call it first world problems. The iPad Mini gets a 4.3 because its screen resolution is holding it back and the New Nexus 7 gets a 4. The final round that decides it all is value. The New Nexus 7's 16-gig Wi-Fi model starts at $229. The iPad Mini's 16-gig Wi-Fi model starts at $329. Then you go to the 32-gig Wi-Fi models with the New Nexus' only $30 more at $269 compared to the iPad Mini that's $429 and that's $160 difference. Now let's say you wanna get a 32-gig 4G LTE version of both, well, the New Nexus 7 is $349 and the iPad Mini is $559 for a $210 difference-- that's just brutal. Now there's nothing to dispute here, the New Nexus 7 takes this round with a 4 and the iPad Mini gets a 2.7. So, let's average out all 6 rounds and in a battle where the New Nexus 7 jumped on top early, the iPad Mini was outmatched in nearly every round and Google's New Nexus 7 is your Prizefight winner. Apple's clearly more than just a little behind now and we'll wait and see if their next iPad Mini can make this a competitive fight in the future. I'm Brian Tong. Thanks for watching and I'll catch you guys next time for another Prizefight.