Last month Google released the all-new HTC Nexus 9 tablet running on Android 5.0 Lollipop, the latest release of the Android operating system. The tablet has a lot to offer and is one of the best Android tablets available this holiday season, and below we’ll go over a few reasons the Nexus 9 makes for a great gift.
For those who don’t need the best of the best like a Samsung Galaxy Tab S or the new iPad Air 2, users who want parent controls and guest accounts for kids mode, and those looking for an excellent experience with stunning sound, the Nexus 9 is your perfect tablet.
There are a wide array of Android tablets on the market from Samsung’s lineup to Amazon Kindle Fire tablets, but Google’s own Nexus 9 has plenty to offer, deals have lowered the price for holiday shoppers, and it’ll deliver a better experience than any of those cheaper tablets or no-name brands some opt to buy for Christmas gifts instead. Read on for five reasons the Nexus 9 is a good tablet to buy as a gift.
This holiday season you’ll be seeing plenty of tablets on sale, many of which aren’t that good or are running old and outdated software. With the Nexus you won’t have to worry about that, and you’ll get some of the best specs and overall features of any tablet released in 2014.
Google’s new Nexus 9 tablet has a beautiful 2560 x 1538 Quad-HD display that is 8.9-inches, so it’s the perfect size that isn’t too small and isn’t too big. It has a powerhouse Tegra K1 64-bit mobile processor with 2GB of RAM, 16 or 32GB of storage, and most importantly, front facing speakers. Add in a big battery, Android 5.0 Lollipop, and even an 8 megapixel camera this is as well-rounded as it gets when it comes to Android tablets.
The Nexus 9 is $399, so it isn’t the cheapest tablet or gift you can buy, but it’s one worth spending the extra money on for friends or family members looking for a tablet. And here’s why.
Display & Front Facing Speakers
The Nexus 9 is one of the only tablets on the market to deliver stunning video and audio, making it the perfect lap companion. It has a new 4:3 aspect ratio similar to the iPad for easy holding and viewing web pages, a crisp 8.9-inch screen, and a pair front facing speakers that deliver excellent sound while playing games, watching YouTube or Netflix, and everything else.
If you’re buying a tablet for someone that enjoys games, watching TV shows on their tablet, or just overall wants a content consumption device, the Nexus 9 is perfect. Things like YouTube, Google Play Movies & TV, Music, Hulu and even the Chromecast to stream it to the big screen.
In our hands-on and review of the Nexis 9 we found it to have one of the best displays of any Android tablet, aside from many the Galaxy Tab S, and the front facing speakers just can’t be matched. Why have speakers face the wrong way with awful sound quality. The Nexus 9 delivers improved sound that will be worth it while enjoying content.
Android 5.0 Lollipop
Google’s Nexus 9 was the first device on the market to run the completely redesigned and improved Android 5.0 Lollipop software. It’s also the first tablet that received a quick bug fixing update to Android 5.0.1 Lollipop. With Android 5.0 Google changed lots of stuff, most for the better, and it’s an experience that most users will enjoy over older tablets with outdated software.
The Nexus 9 user interface is smooth, fluid, fast, and works great on the 8.9-inch display. The powerful NVIDIA processor underneath takes advantage of 64-bit computing in Android 5.0 Lollipop to deliver better performance, and improved gameplay. All the highest end Android games work wonderfully on the Nexus 9, and that’s just one more of many reasons it’s worthy of buying this holiday season.
Personally the new double tap to wake the display feature in Android 5.0 is one of my favorites, something all Android smartphones and tablets should offer, and one more exclusive option for Nexus 9 owners.
Unlike the iPad, with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and above all Android tablets (and now smartphones) have multi-user account options. Also known as “guest mode” or “kids mode” where you can set up multiple accounts on the device. This is one more reason many buyers will want to snag a Nexus 9 over an old Android tablet or something from Apple.
Being able to have one account for all your apps, games, favorite websites and more, then a second user account that’s just a tap (and password) away for your kids makes it a great choice. No one wants kids messing with settings, deleting apps or moving icons, not to mention those sticky fingers have already covered your tablet in gunk.
A few other Android devices like the Amazon Kindle Fire lineup offer kids mode, if you’re looking for other options. This is another one of those features that’s invaluable once you’ve had it, and will keep the “family tablet” in better shape for everyone involved. Get the Nexus 9 for friends and family and they’ll be set.
8 Megapixel OIS Camera
While not everyone enjoys taking pictures with a tablet, the Nexus 9 will be able to produce some excellent photos if needed. The 8 megapixel rear-facing camera includes Optical Image Stabilization, and an LED flash. This doesn’t magically make you take better photos, but it helps remove the blurriness in photos from shaking, and will drastically improve low-light photos too.
If you take tons of photos on your smartphone or tablet, the Nexus 9’s improved camera should produce excellent results. It won’t help moving objects, but low light photos, portrait shots, and landscape photos where any blur will ruin a photo will benefit from this new feature. It also has an f/2.4 aperture lens, which should help the overall photo experience.
Being able to snap photos and beam them to the bigscreen TV in the living room with Chromecast, view them on the 8.9-inch display, or check them out instantly on a computer with Google Photo backup makes the camera another reason to buy the Nexus 9 this holiday season.
Google’s new Nexus 9 isn’t as cheap as some previous tablets released by the search giant, but it’s also their best tablet yet. It offers a great design, an aluminum bezel, the front facing speakers, and much more. Making it one of the most expensive Nexus tablets ever released.
That said, it’s still cheaper than most the Samsung Galaxy Tablets of this caliber, and still cheaper than the iPad Air 2 while matching the price of the smaller Mini 3. This year Google priced the Nexus 9 at $399 for the 16GB model, and $479 for the 32GB flavor, and recently released a 32GB 4G LTE option for $599.
The iPad Mini 3 is also $399 for the 16GB model, but then costs more for extra storage, and the iPad Air 2 starts at $499 and goes up to $829 if you’re looking for lots of storage and 4G LTE connectivity. Google’s Nexus 9 is a good price for a great tablet, and a perfect gift this holiday season that won’t break the bank.
Currently Amazon has the Nexus 9 for $50 off, making it just $349 but the deal won’t last long so grab one while you can.
Buyers have a lot of options when it comes to getting a new tablet, especially ones running Android. However, if you want to buy a friend or family member one of the best Android tablets around, a tablet that will receive quick updates while delivering excellent performance and great audio and video output, as well as everything else we mentioned above, look no further than the Nexus 9.
No tablet is perfect, but the Nexus 9 is Google’s best Android tablet ever released and has plenty to offer. The $399 asking price makes it a pretty expensive gift this holiday season, but get one from Amazon for $50 off, or stay tuned for more details as the Christmas season comes to a close. While you’re here check out our Holiday Gift Guide.