Nexus 7 vs new iPad vs Microsoft Surface vs Kindle Fire – Video Shoot Out

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28 Jun, 2012 11:15 pm

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The Nexus 7 is Google’s entry into the tablet market and out of the gate were impressed with its aggressive $199 price point which put it in direct competition with Amazon’s Kindle Fire. To help you figure out where it stands we’re going to compare it to the new iPad, the Kindle Fire and Microsoft’s upcoming Surface Tablet running Windows RT.

The Google Nexus 7 tablet has a 7″ IPS display with a resolution of 1280×800 and a 178-degree viewing angle, it runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with a 1.3Ghz quad-core Tegra 3 processor that come packing 12 cores of nVidia GeForce grahpics with 1GB of RAM along side 8 or 16GB of internal storage topped off with a 1.2 MP front-facing camera.

The Nexus 7 is 7 inches just like the Kindle Fire, the iPad is 9.7” and Surface is 10.6. When they step on the scale the heavy weight is Surface at 1.49pounds, the iPad at 1.46 for the 4G and 1.4 for the wifi only the Fire is only 0.91pounds and the Nexus 7 lightest at .75 or 340 grams.

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Let’s take a closer look at the display’s the Nexus 7 has a 1280 x 800 screen resolution with 220 pixel-per-inc, that means the Nexus 7 basically has a 720p display with a little extra on the shorter side.

That’s not as good as Apple’s new iPad, at 264 pixels per inch, but still it’s pretty darned good especially when we compare it to the Kindle’s 1024 x 600. Amazon is a clear and distinct loser while Apple is clearly victorious in the category. So what about the Microsoft Surface tablet running Windows RT? Right now we don’t actually know for sure what resolution its going to get, but odds are it’s either going to be 1280 x 720 or more likely 1336 x 768.

What is clear is that Apple continues to rule the high end with its 2048 x 1536 Retina Display but it looks like we’ve got a new best in class for with in the 7 inch market.

Taking a look under the hood Apple’s new iPad is powered by a dual-core 1 GHz Apple A5X processor. It’s fast, but the quad-core 1.3 GHz Nvidia Tegra 3 processor in the Nexus 7 is likely going to be faster. Microsoft won’t specify which Nvidia processor will be in the Surface for Windows RT, so it is likely going to be on par with the Nexus 7. But until these hit the street for a benchmarking battle the only thing that is clear, is that the Fire isn’t even allowed to play.

Apple’s quad-core GPU in the new iPad is no slouch—in fact, it’s very fast—but the Nexus 7 is probably going to give the iPad a run for its money since Nvidia has packed in 12 cores of GPU power and from what we’ve seen so far, it looks stunning. That’s not to say that Surface won’t be a contender as we still have no word on what they’re going to be using. It should go with out saying the Fire lost again.

Design wise this is an interesting comparison since the Nexus 7 looks great, it got a textured rubber backing and sleek clean lines. There is no doubt that it’s going toe to toe with the iPad in terms of design. The Miscrosoft Surface tablet is a lot more functional looking, but it still looks good, but it’s not quite as svelt as its competition. The Kindle is a cheap piece of plastic.

The iPad Surface have camreas on the front and back, the Nexus 7 only has a front-facing camera and the Fire has none.

Operating System
Google just announced Android 4.1 Jelly Bean at the same that is launched the Nexus 7. This update to Android looks great, and it closes quite a few gaps with Apple’s iOS voice control is first one that comes to mind and Jelly Bean extends google’s lead in other areas, like Notifications, for instance, which look fantastic and hands down beat Notifications on iOS 6.

Amazon’s Kindle Fire isn’t even in the running because its sporting a forked version Android 2.3 that Amazon customized to be a portal to Amazon content and physical goods.

Windows RT is a definite wild card, it has yet to hit the market and has tremendous potential, we’re going to have to wait and see where Microsoft fits into this equation.


Storage the iPad has options for 16, 32 & 64, Surface has 32 & 64 the Nexus 7 has 8 & 16 and the Fire only has an 8 GB version.


Tablet’s are nothing with out a solid ecosystem, and Apple is king of this castle. The iPad has around 225,000 apps and they are all customized for the device. And iTunes is a great place to buy music, movies, and TV shows.

Amazon has the second best ecosystem and it’s a very close second. The company has more ebooks than anyone, a healthy Appstore for Android, tons of movies and TV shows, and you can even buy physical goods.

Microsoft is almost starting from scratch as they and don’t have much to offer. This should change once Windows 8 rolls out later this year, but this will take time.

What about Android? A big part of Google’s tablet problem has been the lack of dedicated tablet apps paired with a small catalog of books, movies, and TV shows. Google Play brought all of Google’s digital content under one roof, it’s a step forward, but we’re going to have to see how Jelly Bean rolls out. Over the next few months we could see Google narrow the dedicated tablet app gap between Android the iPad.

So how do you think Google’s Nexus 7 stacked up against the competition? There are too many unknowns to have a definitive answer but for now I have to say that the Nexus 7 looks great, at least from the specs and Google’s presentation. It’s very inexpensive and it has high-end features. It’s going to offer great competition for Apple’s new iPad and Surface and will devastate Fire sales as it truly represents the first credible Android challenger in this space

Product The New iPad Surface for Windows RT Amazon Kindle Fire Google Nexus 7
OS (current) iOS 5.1 Windows RT Android 2.3 (forked version) Android 4.1 Jelly Bean
Dimensions (in.) 9.5 x 7.31 x 0.37 ? x ? x 0.37 (9.3mm) 7.5 x 4.7 x 0.45 7.81 x 4.72 x 0.41 (198.5 x 120 x 10.45 mm)
Weight (lbs) 1.4 (Wi-Fi) 1.46 (4G) 1.49 0.91 0.75 (340 grams)
Display size (in., diag) 9.7 10.6 7 7
Display Resolution 2048 x 1536 (IPS, LED bklight) Unknown (Listed as “HD,” which is likely to be 1280 x 720) 1024 x 600 1280 x 800
Pixels per inch 264 Unknown 169 220
RAM (MB) 1024 (1GB) Unknown 512 1024
Processor A5X (dual core) 1 GHz;
quad core GPU
Unspecified Nvidia ARM-Based Tegra Processor TI OMAP dual core/ 1 GHz Nvidia 1.3 GHz Tegra 3 Quad-core CPU
User Storage (GB) 16/32/64 32/64 8 8/16
Expanded Storage x Unknown – microSD possible x √ (through microUSB)
Cloud Storage iCloud Unknown – Microsoft Service Possible Free Cloud Storage for Amazon Content Google Cloud
Front Camera “VGA” √ (resolution unknown) x 1.2 MP
Rear Camera 5 MP (1080p) stabilization √ (resolution unknown) x x
Camera Flash x Unknown x x
Microphone Unknown** x
Audio/speaker mono spkr, stereo headphone Unknown** mono spkr, stereo headphones stereo spkrs & headphone
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n Unspecified (probably 802.11a/b/g/n) 802.11 b/g/n 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0 Unknown (probably Bluetooth 4.0) x √ (unspecified)
GPS w/4G Unknown (likely, if there is 3G or 4G support) x
Battery Life, hours 10 (9 w/ 4G) (11666 mAh) Unspecified (31.5 watt-hr) 8 (4400 mAh) 8 (4325 mAh)
Accelerometer Unknown** x
Magnetometer/Compass Unknown** x
Gyroscope Unknown** x
Video out HDMI (w/ accessory) + AirPlay Micro HD Video x x
USB x USB 2.0 USB 2.0
Sensors Ambient Light Unknown** x Ambient Light, Proximity
Colors Black or White Gray (with variety of colored keyboards) Black Black
Price US$ (Wi-Fi) 499/599/699 Unknown (similar to other ARM-based tablets – say $399 and up) 199 199/249
Price US$ (3G/4G) 629/729/829 Unknown (see above, but add roughly $100) N/A N/A

Via macobserver, Slashgear

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  • Guest008

    Your estimated price for the RT Surface is likely wrong.
    MS said that it will be positioned (price wise) competitivly to other RT running Tablets, not Android ones.
    So, it’s gonna be around $599 for the 32 Go.
    Just remember that you also have a keyboard and Office on the Surface runnig RT.
    As for the pro, it’s gonna be around $799 for the 32 Go. A really good price for a tactile ultrabook.