Hypercritical: Nexus 7

My product history: iPhone 3G, iPad, iPhone 4, iPad 3

Current products: iPhone 4 + Nexus 7 (getting my 3d replacement Nexus 7 because the first two had hardware problems)

Before I hypercriticize the Nexus 7 I want to mention that I got rid of the iPad to get the Nexus 7. At this moment and for my use I enjoy the Nexus 7 more than the iPad 3.

But I do want to be hypercritical for a moment and present to you a list of things I dislike about the Nexus 7.


1. The power button feels like and is too close to the volume button. Should've been separated.

2. The headphone port should not be at the bottom of the device. When having headphones plugged in I can't stand the Nexus 7 in portrait mode. This is an easy fix by physically rotating the device upside down, but the home screen does not rotate (doh!).

Software (good news, these things can be changed/fixed!)

1. Home screen is always locked in portrait mode. More so than the iPhone it takes you out of the experience every time you go from a landscape app back to the home screen. Youtube does the same thing when you are finished watching a video it pops back into portrait mode (which if you hit the top left back button it will go back into your channel list in landscape mode).

2. Scrolling back to the top of the page is nowhere to be found. If I am on the bottom of a page in Chrome there is no quick tap that will bring me back to the top. I have to scroll all the way back up (yes, boohoo me). I believe some Apps have a way to do this but there is no consistency across the board.

3. Text selector stinks. So selecting a word works pretty well. But moving the input blinker somewhere in the middle of a word or somewhere in the sentence is a pain in the butt. It jumps around and it is very hard to activate it to begin with. I like the way iOS handles it with the magnifying glass and I have no problem with the way iOS handles it. Again there is a strong possibility that I am doing it wrong but holy cow after 3 weeks of using it how hard could it really be?

4. Removing or uninstalling apps. This will be less of an issue on a phone but on a Nexus 7 this is somewhat of a painful process. Let's say I want to remove/uninstall an app that's on the bottom of my screen I have to drag it from the bottom all the way to the top left of the screen. I wish there was a quicker way to do this (like, holding it down until a red x appears and clicking that).

5. Software buttons. Most of the time they are not in the way but I have seen some Apps (especially games) that do not hide them. This is problematic when there are controls right next to the home buttons. You are about to beat your high score and you accidentally hit the app switching software button (ugh!).

6. Notifications. Most likely I am doing this wrong but there are times when I swipe away a notification and they will magically come back. I thought the whole point of notifications is to notify you there is something new. Once swiping it away you acknowledge that you know that there is something new. It shouldn't pop back up 20 minutes later notifying you of something that you have already acknowledged exists.

7. Tablet optimized apps. To be honest I have not run in too many issues with this cliche Android tablet problem. Because the Nexus 7 handles most mobile apps well by displaying more content than smaller Android devices but it does fail with some apps. For example the Flipboard App is not optimized for the Nexus 7…at all.

8. The polish is missing…not in the OS but in the apps. This is not a problem for most people…but I have not found a Nexus 7 App that comes close to Reeder, Tweetbot, Paper, Clear, Sparrow, Dark Sky, Pages. Does the polish add functionality? Nope, not at all. But since I am being hypercritical I had to add this to the list.

Conclusion: I really was hoping the Nexus 7 would wow me into the Android world and maybe I should buy an Android phone to get the best Android experience. But if Apple brings out a good iPad mini and iPhone 5 I think I will stick with that eco system unless Google has a great Nexus phone lined up this fall.