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Major Nexus 7 Problem Remains Unresolved

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A major Nexus 7 problem that users ran into after Android 4.2 Jelly Bean rolled out back in November of 2012 is apparently still an issue and one that Google says is still under investigation more than a year after the problem started plaguing the device.

Back in July of 2012, I purchased Google’s first Nexus-branded tablet, the Nexus 7. The Nexus 7 intrigued me because it not only used Google’s vanilla version of Android but it combined that and high-end specifications with an extremely cheap price tag. For many months, the Nexus 7 served as my go-to tablet when I needed a large screen on-the-go.

It remained in fairly heavy use all the way up until November of 2012 when Google rolled out the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update alongside the Nexus 4. Almost immediately, I ran into a number of problems, problems that would eventually lead me to ditch the Nexus 7, write a scathing review, and pass on buying the Nexus 7 2013.

Before my Nexus 7 2012 died, it died randomly without warning last year, I ran into a number of headaches that seemed to arrive after installing Android 4.2. Among them, a slow charging issue that turned charging my Nexus 7 into a multi-hour campaign. I would literally leave my Nexus 7 on the charger, the charger that Google gave to me, for hours at a time only to see the battery life percentages crawl towards 100%.

When I say crawl, I literally mean crawl. Over the course of several hours, progress would be in the single digits. It was insanely frustrating and unfortunately, neither I, nor Google, were ever able to fix the problem. I heard that some owners found solace in the Android 4.3 Jelly Bean update but as the months went on, I heard from Nexus 7 owners, including some on the Gotta Be Mobile team that ran into the same issue.

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Today, I found myself on the Nexus section of the Google Product Forums and almost immediately, one of the threads caught my eye. The thread is titled “Slow charging Nexus 7” and it appears on the front page.

Inside, there are tons of comments from angry Nexus 7 owners who are complaining about slow charging issues with their Nexus 7. It’s not Android 4.2 that they’re complaining about though, it’s Android 4.4 KitKat. Apparently, after installing Android 4.4 KitKat, users are having trouble charging their Nexus 7.

The complaints all sound like mine, more than a year ago. Nexus 7 is dead or low on battery life. Putting the Nexus 7 on the charger seems to do absolutely nothing. Nexus 7 charges at an absurdly slow rate. So while complaints peg Android 4.4 KitKat as the culprit, this problem isn’t anything new.

The good news is that Google is apparently investigating the issue. A Google employee confirmed that the company is looking into the problem, thanking Nexus 7 owners for their patience:

Hi everyone,

Thank you for your continuous patience as our team looks into this issue.

What Google doesn’t confirm is whether it will issue a fix for Nexus 7 owners who are still hampered by this issue. And with Android 4.4.3 and Android 4.5 updates currently out of reach, there is simply no way to predict when, or if, a remedy will arrive. Of course, there are people out there professing various fixes for the issue, including the fix seen in the video below.

Perhaps, Google will release a definitive Nexus 7 slow charging fix at some point. Maybe the company will finally get around to solving a major issue that emerged more than a year ago.

Or maybe, we’ll see Nexus 7 owners continue to complain after the next Android update at which point Google will say that it’s working on a fix. And I’ll, by chance, notice it, bringing back old memories of a device that I wish I could have loved.

For fun, here’s Google’s advice for those dealing with Nexus 7 charging issues:

If you’re having trouble starting up or charging your Nexus 7 tablet, try leaving it charging for a while using the charger and cable that came with the tablet.

If it still won’t start up after it’s been charging for a while, please see this Help Center article for some additional tips.

If you’ve tried the suggestions in that Help Center article and are still experiencing problems, please contact the company you purchased your tablet from for additional assistance. If you purchased your Nexus 7 directly from Google you can learn more about contacting the Google Play support team here.

Good luck.

29 Comments

  1. AJZ

    02/05/2014 at 6:53 pm

    You need to use the charger and USB cable it came with. I had the same issue until I realized that I mixed up the cable with my phone. The circuitry in the Nexus 7 is a little bit different and the charger is 5.2V instead of 5V like most other chargers. I would go into it more but there’s no time for that. I want you to show me an unboxing of a Nexus 7 2013 with this problem. I doubt people with this problem are using the charger and USB cable that the Nexus 7 came with. Would it have been easier for you if they made a different charging port like an Apple device?

  2. rr

    02/06/2014 at 2:55 am

    ^the guy above me is a complete idio* and ignorant for that matter. If you look into the forums we have tried everything and most are adept and android developers unlike you. What you are stating is insulting. I tell you we have tried everything.

  3. Scott Bushard

    02/06/2014 at 4:21 am

    I can relate to rr as I have an HTC EVO with seido batteries in it, and being as they are not stock battery, you have to use their charger because it works on 5.2 volts also. We Techies aren’t so silly as to overlook a simple fact as that.However that said, I have found ways around it, but then again I am in college for electronic engineering and computer engineering and sometimes it isn’t the volts that matter but the milliamps that make the difference in how long it takes to charge, after all it is the push behind the volts if memory serves correct (few semesters ago) Now that will make a difference, however I can’t see all these chargers loosing their ability to charge, but rather look at the programming running in the background or possibly turning the tablet off? may help as with any electronic device. Just Ideas to try, maybe actually checking it with a meter will let you know if they are going bad? I appreciate this review as I am looking for a tablet right now and came across this helpful and insightful post.

  4. Michael

    02/06/2014 at 5:06 am

    I have the nexus 7 2013 and the 2012 and never ran into this issue.

  5. Martin

    02/06/2014 at 5:21 am

    No issues here with 2012 or 2013 Nexus 7

  6. Buz Kaido

    02/06/2014 at 5:22 am

    Maybe I’m just lucky?
    Yes, my first KitKat update did screw up my N-7 (2012) a bit (but no charging issues; mostly lost auto-rotate and a few other niggling issues) …but 4.4.2 fixed most everything.

    As long as I charge it using the included charging cable, I get a full charge in less than an hour and that charge lasts for more than 24 hours, even when streaming lots of video or full-length movies.

    I also have had great success charging from the lighter plug while mobile, as long as I use the high-output usb port on a dual-charging adapter.

    No, it will not charge or even maintain a charge using a low-amperage standard mobile charger, but using the right charger and the factory cord, it hardly ever goes dead once fully charged in less than 48 hours.

    I guess to be accurate, I should mention that I use a protective case with a magnetic switch that puts the tablet into the “sleep” mode whenever I close the cover, but other than that I’ve got absolutely no complaints about charging or battery life.

    Almost always, a half-hour on the charger in the morning makes it “good to go” for the entire day.

  7. rr

    02/06/2014 at 7:59 am

    It is important to note that this issue does not apply to all. Only to those unlucky ones. Now, if your devices is running fully and well, I doubt you would stumble or even comment on this post, so it seems to me google hired some people to counter this issue. The comments above are suspicious. We, the affected ones, do not intend to destroy the reputation of nexus devices. They are really exceptional truth be told, but the fact that google nor Asus has fallen deaf ears to our complaints, without providing a fix, and making us a complete idiotS by providing as auto generated solutions, makes us want to bring this attention to the next step.You can read the forum guys and know the desperate things we tried for this issue. We are getting hopeless.

  8. C. Brown

    02/06/2014 at 10:51 am

    My 2012 Nexus 7 is currently nothing more than a paper weight. It stopped charging completely about 6 months ago. I even bought the charging dock hoping that I’d be able to charge it thru the pogo pins. No luck at all. I am holding out hope that maybe someday it will spontaneously resuscitate. In the meantime, I received the 2013 version for Christmas and have no problems to report.

  9. John Campbell

    02/06/2014 at 12:50 pm

    Use a different charger. It seems that the fault lies in the charger or the cable of the original charger. I used an LG charger which was meant to charge a phone, and now the nexus 7 charges again. I was slowing dying , and losing all charge, using the original charger and cable.

  10. John Campbell

    02/06/2014 at 12:53 pm

    Ha. Pays to read the post before you post it. I wasn’t dying. The google nexus 7 was .

  11. ben

    02/06/2014 at 3:31 pm

    When he literally means crawl, he means figuratively.

  12. anthony

    02/06/2014 at 5:46 pm

    I recieved the 2nd edition for this past Christmas and have no charging issues I have digitizer problems with which I must hold the tablet at certain angles or the screen will not register any of my touching.

  13. Mark Santiago

    02/06/2014 at 5:46 pm

    Replacing the USB charge port fixed mine. The part was $35 on eBay, install took 3min with a small Philips screwdriver. Oddly, mine going bad also coincided with updating to 4.4.

  14. Buz Kaido

    02/06/2014 at 6:10 pm

    Dear “rr”,
    I don’t know why I should bother to reply to your silly and offensive comment on my motives; I’m sorry for intruding into your private forum. I resent your asinine allegations and I should let it slide; but I’m offended. At least I used my real name, and its unique enough that you can easily find me, including my address and phone #. Send me a stamped self addressed envelope and I’ll send you receipts for my N-7 (purchased retail at WalMart), along with $100′s of dollars in accessories, including a car mount (use it for navigation, using my phone as a hotspot), mobile chargers, accessory cables, and on and on…

    I’m 98% happy with my N-7 and use it successfully many times per day. I suppose, in my ignorance, that this is a forum for “haters” only.

    Please forgive me for trying to post what I thought was a helpful comment.

    I shall not return. You’ve accomplished your mission.

  15. Terrence Keith

    02/06/2014 at 8:30 pm

    My first Nexus 7 had the same problem. Sometimes it wouldn’t charge at all. I opened it up and discovered that the ribbon cable leading to the USB connector was not properly seated. I reseated the ribbon cable on both ends, taped it down securely, and it never happened again. Don’t know if it will help anyone, but if you aren’t in the warranty boat, it’s worth a shot.

  16. Shane

    02/06/2014 at 10:13 pm

    Literally crawl? It can’t literally crawl because that would require arms and/or legs.

  17. DEV.

    02/06/2014 at 11:04 pm

    I have noticed that everyone I know mixes up their chargers. Mine was charging slow for awhile but I mixed up my chromecast and nexus charger. I understand where the first guy is coming from because people are stupid but it’s most likely an app or setting that is changing the amount of current the device is pulling and I’m pretty sure he missed that this is about the 2012 edition. It sucks to do but I had a similar problem with my GS3 and a factory reset fixed it. I’m not sure what app or setting caused the problem and I’ll probably never know. The current of the charger doesn’t matter when the device won’t allowing electricity to flow at the maximum rate. I have not seen a new nexus 7 (neither 2012 nor 2013) have this problem so it’s most likely a common setting or app that is limiting the current. The major problem people should be talking about is the digitizer. It doesn’t always register touch and when it does, sometimes it doesn’t register touch properly.

    That “electrical engineering student” should grab a multimeter and test the current using the stock charging plug with different USB cords. The problem has to be in the cord, an app or setting, or a bad battery/battery connecti. Considering that the programing for battery charging nor the circuitry are complex enough for companies like Asus and Google to mess up. Stock android straight out of the box doesn’t have this problem,

  18. DEV.

    02/06/2014 at 11:10 pm

    Ignore the spelling and grammar errors in the last post.
    If stock android out of the box had this problem, you would have returned the device in the first week since people play around with things more when they first get them. Extremely slow charging would be very noticeable and unacceptable to any knowledgeable Android user.

  19. Butter McHole

    02/07/2014 at 6:33 am

    No problems charging either of my two nexus 2013 models. If its strictly a firmware issue, why doesn’t it affect everyone? My battery life is great too.

  20. Jim

    02/07/2014 at 7:21 am

    Weird. I have three 2012 and one 2013 Nexus 7s in the family. There are no charging issues.

  21. Ian McCully

    02/08/2014 at 6:42 am

    Imho this is one off your battery apps that is causing this thanks.

  22. Ian McCully

    02/08/2014 at 6:46 am

    Also have you all got the software it came with and not put your own on the nexus 7 thanks , mine works perfect thanks.

  23. cerx

    02/21/2014 at 7:45 am

    I am by no means a computer novice but I am now on my second Nexus 7 2013 within 12h. First one turned on but refused to charge and the second one does not even turn on! Luckily I bought it locally at Staples so can keep returning/exchanging.
    I was sucked in by fantastic reviews of the Nexus 7 all over the web and the beautiful Google website but this tablet seems to be a piece of …..
    I have been an Apple computer/iPhone/iPad user for many years so perhaps I am spoiled when it comes to functionality of a product.
    I guess I will buy an iPad mini after all.

  24. ray young

    02/22/2014 at 2:04 pm

    hi all,read all comments my nexus 7 2012 worked well for about a year,after that it just went downhill,charging was a nightmare then it went dead i got it going again but died on me a month ago,tried everything that has been on forum even changed the port,i think it could be the cable ihave gone through 3 cable chargers what i had to do was put table mats on top of cable end it was ok charged overnight turned cable different ways and charged
    but alas its died cant get it back,so its off to canada next week from uk
    to have a holiday with my family good rate at this time so going to buy apple mini i-pad,about $300-400 hope google go bust or apple takeover these people are cheats goverments should fine them and give all there money to charites,good luck everyone ray

  25. Hohne

    03/04/2014 at 4:49 pm

    I have a Nexus 7 (2012). I was 90% happy with it until about 6 months ago when it started to take more time to charge. Today it died at last. What’s the point of an affordable device with great specs that is not dependable? And the silence from Google and Asus is appalling. I’m done with Nexus devices.

  26. John P.

    03/05/2014 at 8:14 am

    I have a Nexus 7 2013 and I’m having the same problem. Takes more than 8 hours to fully charge. Has anyone fixed this by sending in for a warranty repair?

  27. Lim Wee Huat

    03/08/2014 at 11:09 pm

    I m also one of the owner facing this sickening problem. In fact, should be the same problem like Terrence Keith’s. The ribbon cable below the speakers is really loose and I need to adjust it once in a while. Thanks Asus for the lousy parts. Honestly, this is my 1st Asus product, but I don’t think I’ll be using an Asus again..

  28. Al amin

    03/31/2014 at 9:26 am

    I have nexus 7 1gen 4.4.2 . it was working fine . but when I tried to charge my n7 it shows that it is not charging . I used the original charger .I charged my xperia p with that charger . xperia p was charging. But n7 was not . and now I can’t charge my n7 with any charger. Help help help help help help help help help help help help!!!!!!!!!!!!

  29. sintaxi

    04/06/2014 at 4:42 pm

    Same problem here. Was able to use my N7 for only a couple months. Just an expensive paperweight now.

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