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Google's Nexus 7 has smart cover-type sensor just like iPad

The new tablet has a sensor that can detect if a magnet is pulled away, paving the way for possible smart covers a la the iPad.


Has Google's Nexus 7 borrowed its magnetic personality from the iPad?

As detailed in the YouTube clip online and below, a curious Nexus 7 user ran a magnet along the edges of the tablet as the device was asleep. After the user pulled the magnet away from the lower left edge, the tablet's screen came to life. And when the magnet was placed in the same spot, the tablet went back to sleep.

That behavior mimics the process used by Apple's Smart Cover, which turns the display of the iPad on as the cover is pulled away from the tablet. As noted by Android Police, the Nexus 7 seems to be the only known Android device with this feature.

Google sells covers for the Nexus 7, though no mention is made of a Smart Cover type of technology. Asus, which manufacturers the tablet, also sells a cover, which it specifically calls a "smart cover." But again, there's no reference as to whether this employs a similar magnetic process.

The position of the so-called cover sensor is also odd, notes Android Police, as it's on the left side.

Since covers open from right to left, the sensor would have to be on the right side for the whole scheme to work properly.

A Google spokeswoman did confirm to CNET that this functionality exists in the tablet but didn't provide any further details.


A look at the Nexus 7's magnetic charms:

Updated 12:15 p.m. PST with response from Google.