Nexus 7 refresh expected at I/O: upgraded SoC and display, same price

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google, android, nexus, tablet, soc, google io, nexus 7, predictions

With Google I/O just around the corner, speculation is starting to mount about what the company might show next week in San Francisco. The next major update to Android seems like a given, but according to KGI securities analyst Mingchi Kuo, the company also plans to have new hardware to go along with it. Specifically, an updated Nexus 7 tablet packed with latest generation internals and the same $199 starting price.

The Asus-built tablet will reportedly get an updated Snapdragon S4 Pro processor from Qualcomm and a high resolution WUXGA display supporting a resolution of 1980 X 1200 pixels, up from 1280 x 800 on the current model. The device is also expected to pack an upgraded 5-megapixel rear facing camera and Texas Instruments' Qi wireless charging, which is compatible with a wide range of chargers on the market.

As far a physical refinements are concerned the report mentions a thinner bezel and slimmer profile at around 7.5-8.5mm. If Kuo’s predictions based on supplier checks are accurate, all this should put the Nexus 7 near or below the size and weight of Apple’s iPad Mini, with better overall specs and a markedly lower price.

What’s more, the device could ship as early as June or July in large numbers, potentially giving Google a head start to capture sales ahead of an iPad mini refresh -- which is rumored to be delayed until the fall.

Beyond the Nexus 7, Kuo says Google has Android-powered notebooks on the horizon -- which is rather curious given their efforts with Chrome OS -- as well as a new Google TV device and a smart watch. None of this are expected to be show at I/O, however, but rather in another 3-4 months.

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