Nexus 7 Gen. 2: The Tablet for People Who Live in the Sky

Wow! The new Nexus 7 has a Retina-level screen AND gets nine hours of battery life! What’s your excuse, Apple?


In my test, the new Nexus 7’s battery life was underwhelming. Compared with the same battery test of the iPad Mini and first Nexus 7, it fell short at just six hours; the others clocked in at 10 hours and 27 minutes and 10 hours and 44 minutes, respectively. 

That’s Katherine Boehret at WSJ. So where did the nine-hour figure come from? 

Google claims the battery life can last over nine hours, but the company tests it in Airplane mode (Internet connection off), with screen brightness set to 44% while playing video. I keep Wi-Fi on in the background and screen brightness at 75% while playing video. 

You’ve got to be kidding me. This is incredibly disingenuous of Google to use that number. No one, like no one, is going to use their Nexus in airplane mode and with that low a screen brightness, unless, say, they were in a very dark space with Internet connectivity forbidden or unavailable. LIKE ON AN AIRPLANE.

So if you live in the sky, the battery life is almost comparable to already-existing options.  Hmm.

I know, probably 80 percent of users will never get a chance to drain even six hours worth of battery from their device in one day. But it’s those 20 percent who will use it at that intensity level, those are the ones who really give a shit about the tools they use, and they’re the ones who’ll tell the other 80 percent, when asked for advice, pass on this one.

Thing is, I’d still be kind of excited about the new Nexus 7 if they’d just been honest about the battery life. Super-high-res screen, and yeah, we had to cut back on battery. Okay, then, an informed choice then becomes possible. I liked the old one, except the battery life wasn’t the problem. It was the device’s life.

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