Google Announces Android 4.3, Updated Nexus 7

Yesterday saw the media invited to a breakfast with Google’s Android and Chrome chief Sundar Pichai. The event saw Pichai release some interesting figures about Android and tablets, including the announcement that Google has reached almost 70 million tablet activations. Pichai spoke to the exponential growth in the tablet market and the fact that tablet sales are surpassing those of PCs. He also added that Google Play currently has 1 million apps, has seen 50 billion downloads, and developer revenue increased by 2.5 times per user in the past year.

With tablets being such a hot item, it’s no surprise that Google is releasing an updated version of its own Nexus 7 tablet. The new device is around 2mm thinner than the original model and 50 grams lighter, and also includes a full 1080p HD display. Google plans to ship the new Nexus 7 unlocked and with built in 4G LTE that can work with Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile’s networks, allowing customers to choose their carrier.

The upgraded Nexus 7 will run on Android 4.3, the latest version of the Jelly Bean operating system, which was announced alongside the device. While the update isn’t a huge leap forward, it does add Bluetooth Low Energy, as well as improved graphic rendering with Open GL ES 3.0. Also included is a new set of DRM APIs to protect HD content, which will be first put to use with 1080p streaming from Netflix for compatible devices.

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