Android 4.3 & Nexus 7 2 Launch: What to Expect
Last week, Google sent out invitations to an event set to take place in San Francisco on July 24th. Google hasn’t confirmed what it will be talking about on Wednesday but thanks to rumors, it’s clear that the event will be centered around two new products, Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and a new Nexus 7 tablet, currently dubbed Nexus 7 2.
At Google I/O, Google’s annual developer conference, the company neglected to announce a new Nexus 7 tablet or a new version of Android despite the fact that the current Nexus 7 and its Android Jelly Bean turned one year old earlier this month. Disappointed Android enthusiasts and shoppers were unfortunately left to wonder about Google’s upcoming plans.
Fortunately, the rumor mill didn’t stay silent for long and shortly after the end of Google I/O, we saw rumors in regards to a new Nexus 7 2 and a new Android update, Android 4.3, emerge.
At the beginning rumors were relatively scarce. Android 4.3 rumors pointed to a Jelly Bean update rather than a full-fledged update to Android Jelly Bean. Nexus 7 2 rumors suggested that the device would come with some upgrades, including a souped up display and processor. Over the past few weeks though, we’ve come to know both the Android 4.3 update and the Nexus 7 2 and thanks to those leaks, we now know that they will likely be announced in just a couple of days.
On July 24th, Android’s Sundar Pichai will be hosting a breakfast in San Francisco wherein the company will be talking about something. That something is likely Android due to Pichai’s new role as head of Android and Chrome. And with the Nexus 7 2 and Android 4.3 now out in the open, it’s clear that unless Google shocks the world, that they will at least be part of the focus of the event.
Ahead of the event, we wanted to take things a little further and take a look at what consumers should expect from Google’s July 24th event itself.
Android and/or Chrome Statistics
One thing that companies love to do during their big announcements is tout the successes of their respective platforms. And while Google touched on Android activations at Google I/O, consumers should expect Google to toot its horn when it comes to Android, the Google Play Store, and Chrome at the event on Wednesday.
Our guess is that it may talk about number of tablet applications that are currently available on the Google Play Store, an area where Apple has ruled for quite sometime. Apps are crucial to the adoption and success of tablets like the Nexus 7 2 and Google would be wise to start off the show talking about how far the Google Play Store has come.
We may also see it talk about the success of the Nexus 7 which was one of the standout products from 2012. Remember, these events are not developer events, they are aimed at the consumer and because of that, Google needs to sell Android and its new tablet to consumers. Touting the number of apps and its track record are two ways of doing that.
Expect Pichai to toss in some stats in regards to Google Chrome as well including some tooting about the company’s Chromebook lineup. Our feeling is that it will discuss both since it was not labeled, specifically, as an Android event.
Lots of Eyes
While invites to the Android event were limited, Google won’t be limiting the amount of people that can watch the event live thanks to a live stream that will be occurring on YouTube.
The live stream will be available to anyone and we have a sneaking suspicion that we could see hundreds of thousands of eyes glued into the event thanks to the competitive nature of the 7-inch tablet market and the fact that we didn’t see any major global Nexus products emerge at Google I/O. The Google Edition Galaxy S4 is and was U.S. only.
While the event might seem small, we expect a lot of people to be tuning in, particularly those that are on the fence about an iPad mini or a Nexus 7.
Event That is More Apple Than Samsung
While Samsung originally took an Apple-esque approach to its launch events, the company ditched simplicity for extravagance. With the Galaxy S4 launch, we saw it rent out a giant music hall in New York City and use Broadway actors and skits to announce its brand new device. We also saw the company use a corny script for its June 20th launch event, something that frustrated viewers.
With Google, we should see a more Apple type approach to the launch event. Don’t expect actors from San Francisco’s Theater District and don’t expect executives to read off of a corny script. Instead, expect Google to very plainly and very slowly go over the benefits of both Android 4.3 and the Nexus 7 2 on stage.
We expect an approachable event and one that should keep consumer interest until the very end.
Nexus 7 2 Details
Consumers should expect Google to deliver all of the pertinent Nexus 7 2 information at the event. That means a release date. That means its pricing. That means its carriers. That means all of its features. So, everything that the Verizon HTC One announcement was not.
With the 7-inch tablet market as competitive as it is with the iPad mini and Kindle Fire HD 2, and with rumors of sequels filling the air, Google can’t afford to mimic Android manufacturers and announce the device and release its details later. Instead, the company needs to do what Apple does which is to utilize the hook, line and sinker approach.
- Hook: Announce the product.
- Line: Detail the product.
- Sinker: Announce pricing and release date.
It has worked well for Apple and we’ve seen Google utilize it in the past, notably with the Nexus 7.
Android 4.3 Release Date
Android 4.3 is all but certain to arrive on the Nexus 7 2 though it will likely be arriving for other devices as well. The first devices that should see the update include the current crop of Nexus smartphones and tablets including the Nexus 4, Nexus 10, Nexus 7 and the Galaxy Nexus. We should also see it emerge for the Google Editions of the Galaxy S4 and HTC One.
Exactly when remains unknown but we expect Google to detail timing for most if not all of these devices and we wouldn’t be surprised to see the update roll out to owners of the Nexus 4 on the day of the event. It should be followed by the Google Editions and the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 with the Galaxy Nexus bringing up the rear.
Verizon Galaxy Nexus and Sprint Galaxy Nexus owners shouldn’t expect to hear anything at the launch date, and will instead, have to contend with silence from their respective carriers.
The buildup to July 24th has been predictable as most Android launches tend to be. First, we see specifications emerge with a model number. Then, that model number appears at different certification bodies. Then, as we get close to launch, those details are typically confirmed by more concrete physical evidence. Then, we see a launch date announced and then we get the full on details.
This is exactly how the Nexus 7 2 and Android 4.3 launches have played out. Most recently, we’ve seen Android 4.3 and the new Nexus 7 confirmed by full-blown leaks all but confirming a tablet that rocks a 7-inch 1920 x 1200 display, quad-core processor, LTE speeds, and slim design and a piece of software that including some minor tweaks to Google’s Android software.
What this also means is that there is very little left to the imagination. We expect these leaks to be dead on, including those that suggest that the Nexus 7 2 will start at $230 and arrive on shelves in late July.
And thanks to the lack of leaks, we expect these to be the major products announced at the event. While Google may be developing other Nexus devices and other Android software, expect the Nexus 7 2 and the Android 4.3 update to emerge and not a Nexus 11 or Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie.