The lack of a rear camera on the original Nexus 7 was always a bit of a downer. It clearly had the space for a module inside, but including a camera didn’t align with the efforts to drive that device into the price point that made it successful. With the new Nexus 7 we finally get a camera, and a 5 MP one with autofocus at that. Inside the camera is an OV5693 sensor, which best I can tell is a 1/4" format sensor with 1.4 micron pixels. It might not be the world’s best camera, but it’s no slouch either.

I took a handful of photos and videos with the Nexus 7 (2013) to gauge camera quality, and even if this isn’t necessarily a device with focus on imaging it’s not bad at all. I came away pretty pleased for what kind of camera it is. Even though I still strongly believe that you shouldn’t be using a tablet to take photos you intend on using for anything more than sharing on social networks, in this brave new era of mobile devices it’s a feature every tablet and smartphone does need.

I’ll save you the discussion once again about how the Android 4.3 camera UI continues to present a 16:9 aspect ratio crop of the 4:3 image captured by the sensor, which results in a smeary looking, inaccurate preview.


Video on the Nexus 7 (2013) is 1080p30 at 12 Mbps, H.264 Baseline with 1 reference frame, and 96 kbps 48 KHz single channel AAC audio. I've uploaded a sample I took in SF to our servers as well as YouTube. Again I’m dismayed why more OEMs don’t use the full encode capabilities of APQ8064 (20 Mbps H.264 High Profile) but that’s what it is by default on the new Nexus 7.

Display Quality Performance and Storage Performance
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  • darkich - Sunday, July 28, 2013 - link

    That's right. Except that..USB OTG functionality is again absent on the nexus 7.
    It really baffles me.
    Sure, there's rooting, but Google REALLY should've add the USB support out of the box
  • andrewmu - Monday, July 29, 2013 - link

    It's not absent, unless you mean it doesn't ship with the cable. I've got USB OTG working fine on my 2012 Nexus 7 with keyboard, mouse, etc. It's annoying it doesn't natively support USB storage, but that's a more specific issue.
  • broberts - Tuesday, July 30, 2013 - link

    OTG is reportedly functional on the 2013 model. Further, WiFi lets you connect to other devices on your LAN and to the cloud. The lack of an SD slot is at best a quibble.
  • JayGrip - Wednesday, July 31, 2013 - link

    I have a 2013 nexus 7. I couldn't get otg working but in looking around settings found a setting for hotspot which turns the 7 into router. Es file exployer allows you to run a ftp server and its fast. So I use otg on my note2 to transfer files to nexus 7. 1.2 gig movie about 3.5 minutes.
  • user777 - Thursday, August 1, 2013 - link

    I have Nexus 7 2012 and there is no problem to use USB OTG cable + USB stick (or Transcend USB stick with microSD+SD card slot). I use Total Commander+USB Stick plugin (free). It is possible to open any doc/pdf/jpeg/avi/mp4 file.
    It is possible to share any folder or external HDD at your laptop and to use like WiFi Network LAN storage using ES File Explorer. It is possible to play any movie using streaming (without downloading) from the Network LAN storage (MX Player or BS Player). It is even possible playing movie from WiFi FTP server.
  • kyuu - Saturday, July 27, 2013 - link

    Not sure if serious or just trolling...
  • Krysto - Saturday, July 27, 2013 - link

    Apple doesn't use expanded memory either, and they've been selling the tablet at the same high price for years now, and it still only has 16 GB of storage. I'm starting to wonder if they'll ever change it this decade. That $500 should come with 32 GB by default by now.
  • fokka - Saturday, July 27, 2013 - link

    yes, but then people who'd also want to _use_ their ipad wouldn't have to purchase the higher-tier 32gb version.

    to me, a business like this is a scam. i can somehow understand why apple is doing this. they have their itunes ecosystem with sync and whatnot, so expandable memory just doesn't fit in their concept.

    but on android it's just different, since expandable memory works out of the box, if an sd-slot is included.

    so the only reason is to upsell you to a more expensive sku and in the same time severely limiting total storage, which for me as a music-lover and his 50gb library, is reason enough i will never even think about buying your product.

    which is a shame, because the rest of the nexus 7 looks mighty fine.
  • jt122333221 - Saturday, July 27, 2013 - link

    You have about 9k songs, based on a 6mb size for each song. Upload them to Google Play (20,000 songs can be uploaded), download the ones you listen to most to your tablet, and stop complaining - Google's not going to use expandable memory in the near future, as they are trying to push their cloud services. It's (IMO) working well, and their cloud services are great products. The only thing that needs to change is Carriers and their metered data plans.
  • deathdemon89 - Saturday, July 27, 2013 - link

    How does the fact that they're "not going to use expandable memory in the near future" make their decision any less wrong? None of what you said can be used as a justification - in fact, it highlights a very real issue. Cloud services, no matter how "great" they are, can NOT compete with the convenience, accessibility and reliability of expandable storage. This holds even truer in non-U.S. markets where data services are even less developed. At the end of the day, the theoretical risks of cloud data are far higher than the equivalent risks of expandable storage.

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