back to article Google TUGS Nexus 7-INCHER from its online store

Fandroids may be mourning the sudden death of Google's Nexus 7 slab, after the world's largest ad broker yanked the device from its online shopfront over the weekend. A visit to the Google Store reveals that the tablet has now been axed. Anyone searching for a Nexus 7 will be told that it "is no longer available for purchase …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Making room for Nex 7 phone?

  2. ZSn

    Already gone

    While it may have been on their shopfront it was hardly advertised elsewhere. Having looked a few days ago it was all but gone already.

    Lollipop did indeed make a nexus 7 run like a dog. The update 5.1 has made things a bit better (really a better description is 'not as bloody awful'). I wish that they had left it alone...

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Re: Already gone

      "Lollipop did indeed make a nexus 7 run like a dog. The update 5.1 has made things a bit better (really a better description is 'not as bloody awful'). I wish that they had left it alone..."

      This a poor execution by Google. It is their own device, and they cannot make their own operating system run properly on it. Now I do not know whether Google ever claimed that Nexus 7 would be supported by Lollipop. If they did, then they have properly bollocksed it. If they did not (and the 7 is an oldish device now), then why is it seemingly available for download for the 7? Given that they've only just pulled it from sale one has to conclude that Google's official position was that it was a 'current' device; but not one they were able to support properly.

      I used to think that were I ever to by an Android device it would have to be either a Samsung or a Nexus so as to stand a reasonable chance of getting a steady stream of updates. Now it seems that Nexus is not reliably updated either.

      All that makes you wonder how mature Google's software dev team actually is. Failing to account for (i.e. either say it won't be supported, or support it) one of your models that are for sale when you're updating the OS is, well, an amateurish mistake. When done properly you plan your updates, you know your devices, you work out in advance what is going to work and what won't. It feels like Google haven't done that. It feels like Google have rather hacked Lollipop together without thinking too much about it. It makes one wonder what else they've screwed up.

      For comparison both Microsoft and the Linux world have a pretty good history for not cocking up support for existing hardware, and that's in an arena where there is an unbelievable variety of hardware. Even Apple and BlackBerry aren't too bad at it in their closed ecosystems.

      If Google cannot manage to get it right in their closed Nexus ecosystem then they've clearly got a lot to learn.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Already gone

        "This a poor execution by Google. It is their own device"

        Actually no. It was an Asus device in development that they bought naming rights for and sold dirt cheap.

        There's a whole bunch of background on 't web.

        1. bazza Silver badge

          Re: Already gone

          Actually no. It was an Asus device in development that they bought naming rights for and sold dirt cheap.

          What, and Asus didn't give them a full hardware specification? Did they somehow forget to reveal every technical detail to Google? Hmmmmm?

          No. In any relevant sense this is a device Google own.

          1. JeffyPoooh
            Pint

            Re: Already gone

            "[Not in] any relevant sense this is a device Google own."

            They wrote "Nexus" on the box. That implied something as per their own promises.

            They failed to live up to their own freely made promises.

            A Google FAIL that diminished their "Nexus" brand.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Already gone

      The biggest problem with the Nex 7 was its bloody slow flash memory.

      Converting mine to f2fs made a huge difference to usability.

      1. JeffyPoooh
        Pint

        Re: Already gone

        "Converting mine to f2fs made a huge difference to usability."

        A DIY mod? Can you provide a pointer to a reliable description? Thank you.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Already gone

      >I wish that they had left it alone...

      Upon a new version of Android being available for my device, I promptly... do nothing. I wait a few weeks, and so how other people have got on with it,

    4. 0laf Silver badge

      Re: Already gone

      I thought it was only the 2012 that was borked by Lollipop. Unluckily that's what I have and yes it was pretty much bricked by that update. 5.1 has improved it but it still crashes more than W98 and takes longer to boot.

      I picked up a refurbished Kindle Fire 7 for £60 and it wipes the floor with the Nexus, I wouldn't have had another 'droid tablet but £60 plus I subscribe the Prime movies as well so it works well enough for me.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Already gone

        Yeah, I thought so too. I've a 2013 LTE model and Lollipop has been just fine. Once I finally got it, that is, for some reason the OTA update arrived around mid-February here. 5.1 (which arrived in a much more timely manner) has not in my experience made performance worse or better.

  3. Horridbloke

    I'm holding out...

    ... for the Nexus 40.

  4. phil dude
    Thumb Up

    dell 7in?

    I got a free (!) dell 7in when i got an xps 11. It is an older model but has been promised a lollipop update.

    Since my Moto-E 2nd gen is running 5.0.2 I have compared them, and it seems as if the newer lollipop is better at process management.

    You get an explicit "x" in the system view to kill any running processes.

    I still wish we could get proper fine grain control and ext4 support.

    Google, stop dragging your feet on this....

    P.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: dell 7in?

      I tried Lollipop on my Nexus 7 and rolled back. It was basically unusable.

      I had to hack it anyway - as Google + Asus have broken the bootloader and it now bricks your tablet if you try upgrading it. So I downgraded it back to Kitkat. It now works fine and it is not going to be seeing any upgrade any time soon.

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        Downgrade Nexus 7

        Me too - WiFi wouldn't stay connected. As I use it solely for streaming radio/music made it impossible to use. Now happy with Android 4.something - WiFi perfect.

        Don't worry about the downvote - happened to me with an equally non-contentious post. Seems there are Android folk who are as rabid about Android as Apple folk.

  5. KA1AXY

    Shame, because I think its a very convenient size. Much more manageable than the larger tablets and easy to take almost anywhere, especially for reading ebooks.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yep, it's a great size, beautiful screen, just needs a better OS. I stopped at 4.4 and performance is so-so, and Android just ... sucks. I'll have to put Cyanogen or something on it if I want to get a decent lifespan out of it. Which I do, seeing how nobody's making anything I like these days.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      It did not stop at 4.4

      There is 5.0 on Google site and is installable via autoupdate. Word of warning - it will make your otherwise decent tablet virtually unusable and rolling back for some models is nearly impossible because the "official" downloads when used using the "official" install over USB procedure brick your tablet.

      You will need to combine a bootloader from a pre-release build and your OS load of choice to make it work.

      To be more exact you need bootloader build jwr66y or earlier. jwr66v bricks the device. After that you will also need to turn the upgrade nags off because Google will continue to nag you to "upgrade" to the unusable 5.x series builds which break wifi, make the tablet ~ 3-4 times slower in UI responce, etc.

    2. Nigel Whitfield.

      After the Lollipop update made mine horrible to use (and I mostly just use it for reading, so that's some achievement), and the second Lollipop update failed to improve matters substantially, I went for Cyanogen, which was pretty easy to install with their app, and has made it much, much more usable.

      Still doesn't feel quite as good as when it first came out, but it is much better than with the recent Google updates (including the KitKat one, which was where things started to really go downhill for me).

  7. petur

    5.1

    My N7 (2013) recently got the 5.1 update and I must say things are running smooth again.

  8. MuddyBoots

    5.1

    have yet to try chrome again due to the black box bug... Came very close to joining the dark side and getting an ipad mini!

  9. teebol

    Tabs still broken

    On 5.1 rooted, stock. That said it's better than 5.0.

  10. Paul Renault

    I have both Nexus 7s..

    The first edition, yes, runs pretty slow since the Android 5.x, but the second edition (2013?) runs just fine.

  11. x 7

    Pity you can't put Windows 8 on it

    1. JeffyPoooh

      "Pity you can't put Windows 8 on it."

      One of my Windows 8.1 tablets offered an update through MS Update. It was a new and improved driver for the HID. You can probably guess where this is going...

      The touch screen is now unusable. Being a tablet, that's the only obvious control option.

      Still trying to get a solution, if any, out of the OEM. They're still fixated on navigating the menus, presently impossible.

      Sigh...

  12. Craigness

    Katy

    I'd let Katy Perry fondle my 7" any time. And since the 5.1 upgrade I've had fewer issues with the touch screen, which is nice.

    I hope the next Nexus is just like the last (but one) one. It's a good size for the hand and I'd be able to reuse my case.

    1. phil dude
      Joke

      Re: Katy

      @Craigness: "I'd let Katy Perry fondle my 7" any time...".

      I think you forgot "Fnar Fnar!".

      P.

      1. Craigness

        Re: Katy

        She can fondle those too!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Katy

          When a guy says it's 7", it's really only 5.1.

  13. therebel

    Before updating to Lollipop back everything up and do a factory reset first. Then do the update and restore all your data. This seems to be a common fix for the sluggishness after installing Lollipop.

    I know not the same hardware but this definitely works on the Moto G so can't see any reason why it wouldn't for the Nexus 7.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nexus 7 or Nexus 7 2013

    Did the lollipop issue affect Nexus 7 or Nexus 7 2013 (or both)?

    I have the 2013 but haven't really noticed issues.

    1. Tim Bergel

      Re: Nexus 7 or Nexus 7 2013

      From the comments here & elsewhere it appears that its the original N7 that is having problems, my 2013 model is fine with lollipop 5.0.

      1. Chris Parsons Bronze badge

        Re: Nexus 7 or Nexus 7 2013

        I've got both versions of the 7, and a 10. The 7s are both fine with 5.1, the 10 less so - occasionally drops Wifi, but in all other respects all are ok.

  15. ReasonableGuy

    happy with mine

    Writing this on my Nexus 7, running 5.1.

    What problems?

    This has been my cheap ($200) alternative to an iPad for 16 months now.

    Not as useful for content creation, but fine for consumption, and email.

    1. Sid Smith

      Re: happy with mine

      Ditto. My (2013) machine is fine, including all the upgrades.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    i have an iPad

    tried Android, hated it, back to what I'm used to. Don't say I care for iOS much, either (not these days). I got started with iOS back at v5, and I resent the way Apple has locked it down more and more with each 'update'.

    I have a fantastic app which tells me stuff, but it's been able to tell me less stuff with each subsequent iOS release; if memory serves (it's nearly half-2 in the AM, so it probably doesn't) the iOS 5 version allowed me to see which apps were hogging memory, which enabled me to say to a dev that their app possibly had memory leakage/stack overflow issues. It also gave me some idea of why an app crashed. iOS 6 killed the individual app memory reporting, iOS 7 killed the crash reporting, and iOS 8 has killed the ability to breakdown the disc storage (even as far as 'apps, photos, and the enigmatic 'other' - WTF's in there anyway…?!). All I can see now is how much space is used/free, that's it.

    I had a lively exchange of emails with the app's dev (lovely dude - Czech, though you'd hardly know English wasn't his first language) and to say he's pissed off…

    I don't understand Apple's - no, fuck that, I don't understand Apple, full stop. What's it hiding - the fact iOS is a shite mOS…? Everyone knows that. It's gotta be hiding summat to want to make the root less and less accessible - maybe I'll ask the dev if the app would function more like it used to if I jailbroke - I'm too much of a pussy to do that, though - too scared of my slab becoming unfondlable.

    AC coz I fear fanboi stigmatisation.

    1. Alan_Peery

      Re: i have an iPad

      Thank you, it was useful to know that iOS is getting worse (no process CPU reporting?). It justifies my abandonment of the platform ;-), and might be useful in discussing OS upgrades for those I know still on iOS.

  17. Mario Becroft
    Black Helicopters

    But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

    I've had no trouble with my Nexus 7, before or after the recent Lollopop updates. In fact it remains the pick of the bunch for tablets in this size range, in my mind.

    Is this some strange conspiracy or am I just lucky that my tablet hasn't had any problems? What sort of problems did other Nexus 7 owners experience?

    1. Cornholio

      Re: But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

      My 2012 Nexus 7 now runs sooooooooooooo slowly and wifi is forever disconnecting. Google haven't been any help.

      Still loving my Windows phone. Experience with N7 is putting me off trying Android again.

      1. 0laf Silver badge

        Re: But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

        Similar. I have a Winpho which works great and has all the apps I want. Tried a Win8 Tab and unfortunately it is not very good, very fast but a mess.

    2. Mikel

      Re: But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

      I have both the 2012 and 2013 versions of this tablet. Both have been amazing devices that see hours of use each day. Software updates have never been a problem, and we use stock software and keep them up to date. I don't know what these other people are doing with theirs. Maybe they are stuffing the storage to the brim or something.

      1. Nigel Whitfield.

        Re: But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

        Nope; storage on my 2012 WiFi only version never got anywhere approaching even half full, I think.

        I did find, after the stock update to Lollipop, that wiping the cache partition helped a little, as suggested by various websites. But while it was tolerable for a bit (as I mentioned in a post on ElReg around the time), it quickly became slow again.

        Cyanogen has given it a new lease of life; though it's still a bit slow at some things, it's usable.

        It does appear that the 2013 version behaved better; I don't know if there are also perhaps significant differences between the wifi only and GSM versions of the 2012 edition.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: But the Nexus 7 is a great tablet!

          My 2012 Nexus 7 4.4.4 (WiFi only) stopped booting a few months back, nothing could revive it, wiped everything I could find to wipe, installed factory imagines, still hung on boot.

          I tried CyangenMod - multiple crashes of apps but found Slimkat runs very well on it and like the reduced Google Apps package they offer which saves even more RAM.

          http://slimroms.net/

  18. Eponymous Cowherd

    Wrong Nexus

    Google have pulled the plug on the 2013 Nexus 7, which doesn't have any problems with Lollipop. The 2012 version which, certainly, did have huge problems with it, was killed off in, surprise, surprise, 2013.

  19. PeterGriffin

    Drivers

    Any issues are likely to be driver related. A major software gremlin in the Galaxy S2 chipset drivers were diagnosed in Lollipop which were present but less frequently triggered in KitKat. It caused S2 devices to hang, run slow and lockup. The same driver (for Exynos chipsets) didn't affect those devices... There were also WiFi issues but these are often resolved by formatting the data and system partitions before installing Lollipop.

    It impresses me that clever and dedicated software engineers in and on the periphery of the CyanogenMod community can bring the latest version of Lollipop to a device almost 5 years old. As a consequence my battered and cracked S2 is running a more up to date version of Lollipop than my Galaxy S5!

  20. Paul B

    Factory Reset

    My 2012 Nexus 7 was unusable when I updated to android lollipop 5.0 back in December. I did a factory reset and it was fixed, back to Android 4.4 speeds. After a few days of running, however, the memory leaked popped up and it needed a soft reset to get it running smoothly again. It is now running Android 5.02 and I <think> that the memory leak is fixed, as I now very rarely need to soft reset my device.

    I was close to chucking the thing in the bin back in December when Android 5.0 came out. So a word a of advice; just factory reset it, and it will work ok.

  21. BigFire

    My only complaint with Nexus 7 2013 is battery time. After 5.0 and now 5.1 update, the battery just runs out quit quickly and charged slowly. Perhaps the battery on this slab is going, but I'll miss it. Morning exercise on treadmill wouldn't be the same without this tablet for me to do my morning reading.

  22. mrmond
    Linux

    A mixed bag of lollipops

    My Nexus ran like something brown and steaming after the upgrade to Lollipop. I went back to 4.4 and it was fine again, next tried the 5.02 update and it ran ok'ish but web browsing was a 5 minute page loading affair and any memory intensive app ran like treacle so I yet again downgraded.

    After being nagged for a long time to update to 5.1 I was pleasantly surprised. Most performance issues are gone apart from the memory leak others mentioned. It's crazy bit I can have everything force closed, turn it off overnight and have problems running an app when I turn it on from sleep overnight. Then I force close whatever app I tried to start and it runs superb for several hours, even Chrome or Firefox. It seems that as long as I remember to close apps after I get to 4 or 5 running in the background then it's happy, except for the memory leak after a few hours of non use.

    Strangely my new Moto E 2015 runs Lollipop 5.02 and it's a dream, even with a ton of apps installed. Literally runs like silk and makes me wish it ran so well on my Nexus 7 2012.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Accounts

    I'm running the old nexus 7 with 5.1 build LMY47D. I've started seeing occasional memory issues after creating and running a 3rd concurrent account on it 3 or 4 weeks back (to support 3 simultaneous Clash of Clans :-))

    Until that point, no real issues to report...Just turn off auto update on EVERYTHING and never open chrome (use Firefox or Dolphin), then everything works OK.

    Each running account only uses 40-45MB, system occupies ~350MB and apps ~180MB...leaves me a very comfortable 440MB for video hangouts etc.

    Lovely bit of kit...maybe now I can pick up an end-of-shelf unit or 3.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Accounts

      I have 2012 3g version and picked up 3 more refurbed wifi versions for less than 40 quid each (expansys.com.hk) before Christmas. Upgraded to 5.x but now they are regularly v-e-r-y slow. Too slow to use.

      Needs a downgrade

  24. eJ2095

    Well

    My 9 year old has bounced his so a nice cracked sreen.

    And you have to replace the screen and the digitizer at the same time as they are glued together. (Very well i might add)

    but 35 quid for both erm......

  25. David Gosnell

    Lollipop was ghastly on the 2012 N7...

    ... and although one cannot be 100% sure, we suspect that it contributed significantly to the SSD going tits up shortly after upgrade, and subsequent hard bricking. Frequently performance issues on lower-end computer stuff comes down to disk I/O, so we suspect Lollipop's constant memory leakage put extra stress on the SSD which broke it. Out of warranty of course, with their (probably illegal) 12-month terms. Once I would have said always get a Nexus because they are well supported, but kind of glad our new Samsung Galaxy Tab's not showing any signs of moving off KitKat.

  26. John B Stone
    Holmes

    I guess now they have pulled the plug we can safely assume that Android OS 6.0 will brick the Nexus 7 2013.

    Like others I had to reinstall 4.4 to get my Nexus 7 2012 usable after Lollipop.

  27. Dominion

    Never again!

    After this fiasco I won't be buying another hardware device from Google - rebranded or otherwise. As well as being unusable after the Lollipop release mine now takes over a day to charge from flat to full. It was a good value useable product when I bought it, It's become next to useless in less than 3 years.

  28. John Robson Silver badge

    Got an N7 2012...

    And loved it - did much, much stuff on it, and used a BT connection to a feature phone to tether for remote access when needed.

    It slowed a bit with the latest update, but recovered with a clean up.

    IIRC the SSD inside was not of good quality in terms of lifespan.

    Now have an iPad (changed due to availablility of audio specific applications) and it also has moments of delay - so I'm not going to berate one or the other. 2+ years of good service out of the N7, and then it got sold to a colleague who is still using it (and happy)

  29. Steve Evans

    Knew this would happen...

    Keeping the Nexus 7 name between generations has completely confused your minds!

    The original, 2012 Nexus 7 and the MkII 2013 Nexus 7 are completely different beasts. Different processor, chipsets, ram, screen, case, in fact the only thing they had in common is the name.

    The 2012 Nexus 7 has been out of production for years. This is the model with the tigra chipset and the slow flash issues reported by many, especially with the 5.0 release of Lollipop.

    The 2013 Nexus 7 is the one which has just disappeared from the store. This newer model runs Lollipop like a rocket.

    1. Brian Morrison

      Re: Knew this would happen...

      Yes, the 7 in the name refers to the screen size rather than a specific model.

      1. Steve Evans

        Re: Knew this would happen...

        And that's enough to confuse the El Reg headline writer, announcing the withdrawal of the 2013 model from the web shop, whilst the tag line refers to the 2012 model. Maybe they should have used a very accurate screen size for the name... The 2013 is a fraction of an inch bigger... The Nexus 7 1/32th ;o)

        BTW, my 2012 N7 suffered at the hands of Lollipop (it's been handed down to other family members), but with the arrival of 5.1, a complete wipe, and only reinstalling things that were actually needed, it's actually become usable again, although still not as fast as it was on kitkat (the crap flash is probably the main issue here). Rather reminded me of Windows 95 (nothing like a fresh reinstall to get things moving again).

        My 2013 N7 always had a clean wipe install every few upgrades, so never collected the level of "fluff" the 2012 did. The 2013 hasn't put a foot wrong software wise, although I do have occasional auto rotate fails, which I believe is due to cracks in one of the ribbon cables inside (reseating it fixes it for a few days). I really should just order a replacement cable for £15!

        Still more than happy with it. 18 months of daily use, been dropped a few times, sat on dozens of times (glad I bought a case), and everything bar the rotation is still working perfectly. Amazed the battery capacity has held out TBH, it really get some abuse.

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