Microsoft wasn’t the only tech giant to announce new mobile products on Monday. Android maker Google also announced new Nexus-branded smartphones and tablets, including its first-ever 10" iPad rival.
Google originally planned to introduce the devices at an event in New York City on Monday but cancelled because of Hurricane Sandy.
“People increasingly have more than one device, and they switch between them many times a day,” Google Senior VP Andy Rubin wrote in the firm’s Official Android Blog. “Today, we’re excited to announce three great new Nexus devices … in small, medium, and large. And they all run Android 4.2, a new flavor of Jelly Bean—which includes the latest version of Google Now and other great new features.”
The three new devices include the Nexus 4 smartphone, an updated version of the Nexus 7 media tablet, and a new device: the iPad-killing Nexus 10 tablet.
The Nexus 4 might have more fairly been called the Nexus 5: It features a large, 4.7" screen and a quad-core processor. The device is made by LG and will cost just $350 in unlocked form with 16GB of storage.
The Nexus 7, introduced earlier this year, has been updated with a slimmer form factor, new storage options (16GB for $199 and 32GB for $249), and a new 4G (HSPA+, not LTE) option in a $299 package that also includes 32GB of storage.
The new Nexus 10 features an astonishing 2560 x 1600 resolution in its 10" display, stereo speakers, multi-user support, and 9 hours of battery life. The 16GB variant (Wi-Fi only) will cost $399—well under the $499 starting price of the iPad.
The new devices are curiously a bit of a mixed bag. Although the Nexus 10 certainly bests even the iPad’s retina display from a resolution perspective, the Nexus 4 lacks LTE networking—a feature its predecessor, the Galaxy Nexus, provided. But Google says that LTE required two batteries, killing performance and creating a thicker device. This time around, the firm wanted a phone that worked well in all markets.
The Nexus 7 is available now. The Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 will become available later this month, Google says.