Google unveiled its Nexus 7, a 7-inch Android-based tablet, on Wednesday, and analysts are saying its no threat to Apple’s iPad — even with its US$199 price point. Instead, the tablet competes with Amazon’s Kindle Fire, and the 7-inch iPad, which doesn’t even exist.
“Essentially, we believe the Nexus 7 is more of a competitor with the Kindle Fire, rather than the iPad,” said Brian White from Topeka Capital Markets.
He also thinks Apple may be planning to release a smaller version of the current iPad with a 7-inch screen.
Google’s Nexus 7 tablet
“We believe an ‘iPad Mini’ could be released this September at a price point of $250- $300, providing a more cost competitive product for Apple and opening up a new market segment,” he said, according to Barrons. “The resolution (1280-800) of the Nexus 7 does not compare to the new iPad (2048-1536) with Retina display, while the new tablet is only available in Wi-Fi versus 4G and Wi-Fi for the iPad.”
J. Gold Associates analyst Jack Gold backed up the idea that the Nexus 7 is more a threat to Amazon than Apple, according to Computerworld. “Nexus 7 is more than a Kindle Fire competitor, but certainly no iPad killer” he said.
He also sees Google’s move into the tablet space as a decision to compete in the market as a whole, and not as a direct attack on the Kindle Fire. The fact that the Kindle Fire also costs $199 and has a 7-inch screen, however, means consumers may look at both devices before choosing — assuming they aren’t interested in an iPad.
By announcing its tablet now with a ship date in a few weeks, Google may be trying to get a head start on Apple. Rumors have been claiming a 7-inch iPad is in the works to supplement the 9.7-inch model, and should Apple actually release the smaller device both Amazon and Google will likely have some serious competition on their hands.