So, back in February, I won a Nexus 7 tablet at the SCALE11x conference. After receiving the tablet, I fiddled with it a bit, then promptly wrote a Linux Journal article about it, then pretty much shelved the little guy.
Recently, I pulled it out, charged it up, and started playing with it again. Despite my affinity for iOS for things like tablets and phones, I find the Nexus 7 experience to be pretty darn smooth. The keyboard does make me twitch, mostly due to the layout differences between it and iOS, but I find myself hauling the Nexus 7 around the house a bit more. I’ve discovered a few things about using the Nexus 7 that are pretty neat:
Crossplatform apps like Evernote are available, which helps ease the pain of just picking the device up and getting to my data.
The Amazon app works great as an e-reader, just like it does on the iPad and iPhone. It’s great to jump from Kindle, to iPad, to Nexus 7, to iPhone and just pick up where I left off in the same book.
Dropbox, Copy, Cubby, Box, and Google Drive all have Android clients, so any data I drop “in the cloud” can be accessed on the Nexus. Nice to know.
There’s a read-only 1Password program which seems to get the job done, if not awesomely. Would love for it to be a full 1Password client.
DroidEdit is a pretty decent text editor. Matter of fact, I’m using it right now to write this blog post – from the Nexus 7.
There’s a Zinio app for Android, which is awesome, cause I can read HOT ROD magazine on it.
There’s also a Marvel Unlimited app for Android, so I can just cruise thru old Marvel Comics issues on a whim. For .CBR based comic-archives, there’s Komik or Perfect Viewer which get the job done.
Fair amount of good free games, like Jetpack Joyride, Real Racing 3, Angry Birds, and Heroes of Order and Chaos. Plenty of things to do to kill time.
However, there’s a fair share of things that DO annoy me:
No “Drafts” app for Android. Drafts is an app that I use ALL the time on iOS, and it annoys me that it’s not available for the Nexus 7.
Likewise, there’s no Day One journalling app. Yeah, I know there are journalling apps, but I use Day One on iOS and Mac, and I’m not going to change the format now.
Apps that just flat out don’t work on the Nexus 7, despite them being Android tablet apps. I’m looking at you, DirecTV.
All the Google-isms make me twitch a little, particularly with the PRISM stuff going on. But it’s as close to ‘pure’ Android as one can get, even if it does want to talk to the Big G every couple minutes. Dunno about that.
In all, though, it’s a neat little device. If I only had a couple hundred dollars and I wanted to buy a tablet, I’d pick one up. It’s worth it, despite the fact that it’s not iOS. ;)