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back to article Rumour: Asus rejects $99 Nexus 7... rumour

Google and Asus won't be releasing a $99 (£61) Nexus 7 tablet, the second of those two partners has insisted. Somewhere on the internet, someone has suggested that the pair have just such a plan in mind. The $199/£159 price point will be maintained for a higher spec model, goes the theory, while the pared-back entry-level model …

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Anonymous Coward

Somewhere on the internet, someone has suggested that we are all descended from Martians. You might like to follow that one up too, as it seems quite interesting.

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Alien

some of us are martians...

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HMB

I don't know about you, but I heard that Apple was going to arrange a press event and issue a formal apology for hypnocritically stealing other peoples ideas even from it's inception as a company and then passing them off as their own while simultaneously bitching about people copying the simplest of things from them. (Xerox UI, Multitouch, stuff like that)

That's what I heard anyway. :P You know these, rumours, aren't always true.

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Anonymous Coward

"some of us are martians..."

Dude! Don't let the Human's know we're here! Do you want the SMP coming after you?

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FAIL

why are we even talking about this?

It doesn't have a Micro SD card slot, so even $99 is to much.

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Pint

Go for it!

The lost flock of iSheep will be getting their 7 incher before Christmas, so let this baby rip into it with both barrels!

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Re: Go for it!

The Nexus 7 is a nice and unexpensive device (I'm typing on one right now) but it's not an iPad. It's a totally different thing. If you want an appliance the Nexus sucks, if you want a tablet computer the iPad sucks.

And why should Google/Asus make it even cheaper as it already is?

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Re: Go for it!

iSheep?

If Android is the number one mobile OS, surely Android users are the sheep?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Go for it!

"If Android is the number one mobile OS, surely Android users are the sheep?"

Definition of a sheep: Someone who follows the crowd without thinking for themselves.

There are no doubt plenty of sheep in the Android ecosystem, but for most of us who chose Android rather than being told to buy it, we did so because of the advantages of the platform over iOS.

Anyone who bough an iPhone didn't do so because of logical thinking. Higher price, less features, less freedom, more butt hurt. So they're either a sheep or stupid.

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Pint

Re: iSheep

You mean the knowledge, intelligence and social status boosting iOwnersheep ?

@craigj: Scale is unrelated to people being sheep or not.

Sheepness relates to people who allow certain things to be done with them, like being herded around a walled garden, with the promise of keeping out bad wolves and the complexities of the real world.

Interpreting the regular shearing they are given by their greedy master as a religious experience is a symptom that might point us more in the direction of Lemmings though.

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FAIL

"Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

I'm sorry but this is just sensationalism.

The Nexus 7 runs vanilla Android, it has access to Google Play which comes pre loaded but absolutely no restriction on installing apps from elsewhere or even installing other app stores eg Amazon.

It isn't tightly tied, it isn't even loosely restrained.

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Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

Came here to say that. Bravo.

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Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

The bootloader isn't even locked so if you were a masochist you could even flash Android without the store or even flash something on there which isn't even Android.

Google so far have relied on the power of the default which means they don't need to lock down devices. They know that they can give users the choice because 99% of users won't even take it even when it's available.

So why spend an inordinate amount of effort securing a device or risking additional heat from regulatory bodies?

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Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

The Playstation 3 was initially sold at a loss, possibly the XBOX 360 too. But there is only one source of software for them, and in the case of the XBOX, a £45 / year subscription for those who want to get the most out of their purchase.

The Nexus is not like these devices.

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Syd

Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

While this is clearly correct, it isn't quite the full story - you have to manually turn on 'Allow unknown sources' in the security settings; and when you do so it presents you with quite a severe "security warning" dialog, which basically says that you are putting your device and your data at risk by doing this; so I can't see many non-techies doing it, to be honest, which makes it "psychologically tied", shall we say, even if not physically tied.

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Law

Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

"so I can't see many non-techies doing it, to be honest, which makes it "psychologically tied", shall we say, even if not physically tied"

I'd say it's the opposite... a none technical person who gets told by amazon to do this (with screenshots on how to do it) to get their app store and free app a day would happily do this. To the non-technically person it will be no different than the "scary" warning that installers and any downloaded files trigger in OSX and Windows 7 when you execute/open them.

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Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

Bravo from me too - I've had no problems getting everything I wanted onto my Nexus 7 without having to use Google Play.

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Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

Well said that man. Unfortunately El Reg seems to often get facts wrong about Android in their articles. Would've thought the fact that Apple won't answer their calls would give them more time to learn about other platforms.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Google Play shop to which the Nexus 7 is tightly tied"

"I'd say it's the opposite... a none technical person who gets told by amazon to do this (with screenshots on how to do it) to get their app store and free app a day would happily do this."

I agree with this, I'm an Android dev. and since exploring the world outside of my cave a little more (the local) I've found countless people running pirated apps and happily giving advice on how/where to do it. These are just normal people one being a barmaid. They are exposing themselves to a massive risk but don't seem too bothered (they could just be unaware).

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really?

el reg is now resorting to reporting what one person has said on the internet? I suppose it gives you a lot of scope to report almost anyhting. I look foward to more stories based on what one perosn has said:

Smoking causes green horns to sprout from heads

The queen is in fact a man

Donkeys used to have an advanced civilistation that was destroyed in an interglatic war

Whales enjoy wii games

Apple plan to start a fruit and veg store

Cant wait to be honest.

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Re: really?

"Apple plan to start a fruit and veg store"

They plan to call it "Grocery Store" and will be suing Walmart.

True story.

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I would be most annoyed if they did, because I just bought one.

But, considering their costs and that I got £15 Google Play credit, I doubt they could do it. Though, maybe they'll just scrap the credit if they did do.

People are basically gossiping that Google will sell at cost, which I think is a bit of a stretch. The device is very nice but I bought it BECAUSE it doesn't have any external storage, 3G or a lot of other junk and will be compatible with virtually everything out there on the store (which some of the cheaper tablets aren't, even if you hack the store onto them) - it's going to be used by a child, so I don't want that junk and I want to be able to lock it down. I can't see the price coming down soon given what's in it, and that it will never really own the tablet market because of some huge feature omissions in the hardware.

I think the rumour is probably just that. And it's a nice device but it's not nice enough for everyone to rush out and buy even at 2/3rds the current price. You can't make a loss leader with a device that's behind every other offering out there.

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Anonymous Coward

My understanding is the N7 and most Nexus devices are pretty much sold at cost anyway with the profit going to the manufacturer rather than Google. At £160 there can't be a lot of profit involved.

The thing to remember though is that Google makes it's money through advertising. One more N7 is one more device showing adverts (at least that's the theory).

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Cheaper Nexus 7

I can see them removing features that are rarely used on the Nexus 7 like GPS (it's useless outside of a wifi network anyway, so all it's really telling me is where I know I currently am) and the front facing camera.

But knocking the storage capacity down to 4GB would be a nightmare, it's bad enough for those people on the 8GB. But with 4GB after the OS and a few apps they'd run out of space damn quickly.

Can't say I like the new kindle fire much, but amazon were bang on the money when they said the minimum should be 16GB.

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

I imagine the camera is useful for Skype etc. Agreed about the GPS chip, but how much would it really save?

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

Mark,

I am confused as to the GPS being useless outside a wifi area. I thought that the Nexus had a GPS chip in it and word work anywhere ( like my Garmin running watch )

I just wish someone would marry a waterproof device similar to this, possibly with e ink for battery life and full OS ( or similar ) mapping.

I can read a map and navigate but could see a use for such a device.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

full (or "full", depending on who you ask) OS mapping would cost you a grand on top of the device, and then it would become inoperable with the next OS (Operating System, not Ordnance Survey) upgrade, say to 4.2, if we're talking Android, due to "licensing restrictions", as they gently put it. We've been there, done that, THANK YOU so f... much, OS (= Ordnance Survey).

and then, if you want the most up-to-date version of those maps, in 2 years time you'll pay the FULL price for them again, yessir, all paid from your tax money.

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

If you're outside a WiFi area you can't download the map tiles for where you are, so even if you actually are on a white plain with grid lines it can be tricky finding your way to anywhere else.

On the other hand, lack of GPS is one of the reasons for not having access to whatever the Market is called currently.

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

GPS should work without wifi! Unless you're wanting to use some sort of online mapping service. I've always thought it weird that you couldn't download Google Map data for a location for offline use. Since generally when you need map data, you need it quickly or where you don't have internet access.

TrekBuddy with a whole bunch of my OS 1:25k map tiles is decent on my phone. Would be even better on this!

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

"I can see them removing features that are rarely used on the Nexus 7 like GPS (it's useless outside of a wifi network anyway, so all it's really telling me is where I know I currently am) "

Actually there are plenty of apps that make good use of GPS without the need for a network connection. OsmAnd is a good example. An Openstreetmap based mapping / navigation app that uses offline maps.

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

"I've always thought it weird that you couldn't download Google Map data for a location for offline use."

Err, you can, and have been able to in the last few versions of Google Maps. Very useful it is too. Open Google Maps, press menu button, press "Make available offline" and select the area you want to download.

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Coat

Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

You can download maps for offline storage for a while ( started ages ago as an option in google maps Labs )

.......

Mine is the one with a nexus 7 stitched into it with few gigs worth of maps dowloaded

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

Backcountry Navigator Pro gives you all the OS maps (courtesy of Multimap) for a £8.00. Search isn't perfect, but its better than you get on paper maps.

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Angel

Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

You can download Google map data for offline use, but it is a but clunky. You have to zoom in until a red square turns blue, (no more than, roughly, 60Mb) and that square is then stored. You can store around five of these squares, so could store an area the size of Brittany*. It's fiddly and doesn't always work, but is an improvement on the previous 'Labs' incarnation, where you had to trust the cache wouldn't be over written.

There are also apps like Mapdroid, which allow for entire regions of countries to be downloaded in advance (by name, rather than on a map), though my old man was distrustful of it since it showed a road in a lake.

*I cite Brittany from experience, not because I'm trying to displace Wales (or whales) from the list of approved Reg Standards.**

**Hey Reg! Why haven't you put your units into a convenient app yet? What is this, the Twentieth Century?! : D

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

Orux Maps and Locus both allow you to cache online maps, including the UK OS at 1:25k. Just don't go crazy with the bandwidth or the providers won't be happy. I would love a Nexus for gps duties in the car, but the lack of expandable storage means I won't ever buy one, and as it is my Galaxy Note is doing great.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

to be precise - with googlemaps you can download a map (maps), but only within a 10-mile radius from a point you click on. Yeah, you can go on like that to "grab" more of this precioussss googleland, but it's a pain in the ass, and as this "feature" comes from google, you can guess it is done on purpose, to stop you grabbing to much of "theirs"..

nb, when I tried to use such offline map "outthere", what I saw was.. a (sparse) network of streets, against a grey background. Very f... useful - NOT. Yeah, right, there's probably a box to tick/untick, but I couldn't find it. So I went straight to competition, openstreet, and... uhm... something else, I dunno... mapdroyd, I think. They do the job well enough.

btw, I'm truly baffled by so many people here surprised that the gps should work when no wifi is present, the youngsters these days... ;)

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Re: Cheaper Nexus 7

You can download GPS data for Google Maps on the Nexus 7. I've done it, just to try it out (there's a perfectly good GPS in the car already).

I don't have my nexus 7 with me, but the option is listed in the Google Maps menus on the device.

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gps not useless

You can download standalone apps with maps that get stored on the device, turning it into a decent GPS for use when, say, driving a car.

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FAIL

Tony Smith

You been reading Digitimes articles by any chance.....

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I personally find GPS on the Nexus7 to be invaluable for proper sized maps on the street - I use my phone's WIFI hotspot for the data connection.

Also, haven't teardowns shown that ASUS have left SIM card / module space in the Nexus7 design where future tweaks to the hardware could easily be made to add such a feature?

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MicroSD

Just give it a MicroSD slot, and hopefully an HDMI port, and then I'll buy it. Until then, no chance of a sale.

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Re: MicroSD

Actually, I'd like a microSD AND a full size SD slot so I can offload my photos to it and add storage when I need to.

It wouldn't take up much space, it's a tablet for goodness sake..

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Anonymous Coward

Re: MicroSD

"Actually, I'd like a microSD AND a full size SD slot so I can offload my photos to it and add storage when I need to."

Go on then, lets have a Sony memory stick port in there as well.

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They probably ain't put the sticky label on yet!

Obviously it is or was the new iPad mini.

Expected to cost $300 it is now looking quite lost and needing a job lot buyer.

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Considering I can get a reasonable, Android running, smartphone for £50 no strings attached, then I suspect it won't be long before I can get a 7" tablet for £100 or less. Especially if it doesn't have the 3/4G networking capability and a SD card slot.

Perhaps it just needs to be someone other than Asus. ZTE for example.

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Cheap 7" tablets

"I suspect it won't be long before I can get a 7" tablet for £100 or less."

You can get several 7" tablets at newegg for around $75. Of cours, they probably are not very good.

When the Amazon fire came out, it had a BOM of close to $200. After around 9 months, the BOM dropped around $50. I wouldn't be surprised at all if the Nexus 7 BOM drops similarly. Take away the Google Play credit, and you are down to $125.

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Anonymous Coward

they're around

I got mine for about 85 quid, and it does come with a micro sd slot, and a gps. Yes, the people with penis envy would snigger at 800 x 400 dpi resolution, googleplay, fairly speedy processor, 8 Gb internal storage, 1 Gb ram... And for a 7 inch job I find the resolution more than sufficient, After all, it's not a f... HD TV for fuck's sake. And this was bought six months ago, and it still does its job, i.e. a toy for my kids and a book reader. So... say NO to google nexus! :D

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Unhappy

Permanently subsided products to sell them at below cost and gain market share = anti-competitive.

Guaranteed Satan's minions (aka Apple lawyers) are standing by on this one.

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...assuming they can prove it is indeed subsidised, of course.

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Anonymous Coward

coffee table or mobile

I think underlying this is some category confusion about whether such items are coffee table devices where pretty soon storage is increasingly less of an issue (via NAS/media boxes and Cloud) or more mobile personal devices.

The coffee table device can lose gps, 3g, rear cameras, storage maybe even battery (especially if you add induction charging), the mobile device may need more and better but is under more restrictions on size and fragmentation as smart phones get more varied.

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