Nexus 10 Review

Posted on Monday, Nov 19 2012 on 11:00 AM


This is our quick mockup based on the manual drawings (home screen: ZDNet)


On the Nexus 10, icons at the bottom of the screen emphasise Google's media products available through Play. Click on a picture of film to watch movies, headphones to listen to music and a book to, well, read books. Another icon gets you to the Play store to obtain more content and apps.

The Nexus has a rubberised back and fits more snuggly on my lap than the metal-backed iPad. In my hands, I don't feel as if the Nexus would slip out and crash on to the hard floor, as I continually do with the iPad.

There are front-facing speakers going up and down both sides of the Nexus, compared with just one tucked in a corner on the back of an iPad. You feel more immersed watching video with sound coming right at you from the entire device. I hadn't considered that a problem on the iPad, but I began to notice it once I played video on the tablets side by side.

The screen measures 10.1 inches (25.6 centimeters) diagonally, which is more than the iPad's 9.7 inches (24.6 centimeters). But the screen isn't any larger because while it's about an inch wider in horizontal mode, it's also about a half-inch less in height. This works well for widescreen content, which completely fills the screen. On the iPad, the latest movies and TV shows often have black bars, no matter how you hold the tablet. In some cases, you might see the sides of video cut off to fit the space, as I did watching this week's episode of "Revenge" on Hulu. Again, I hadn't considered that a problem on the iPad, until I began to notice it.


What makes the tablet's shape good for movies makes it less-than-ideal for magazines, though. There's wasted space on the top and the bottom for magazines on the Nexus. But I watch TV shows and movies online more often than I read magazines digitally, so I'll let it slide.

As for books, text on the Nexus' screen comes out sharp. News sites and apps also look nice. The Nexus has a screen resolution of 300 pixels per inches, slightly better than the 264 ppi for the latest full-size iPad (which itself is far better than the 132 ppi on the older iPad 2 model still available).

True, there are other tablets designed as media players, too. Kindle Fire and Barnes and Barnes & Noble Nook HD come to mind, and both have larger versions out this month. But neither has the diversity of apps available for the Nexus and other full-fledge Android devices (The Kindle and the Nook run on modified versions of Android and restrict apps to what's available through their own online stores).

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