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Google Expands Tablet Line, Adds Phone

Mountain View, Calif. – Google unveiled its next-generation Nexus smartphone and an expanded selection of Nexus tablets, including its first 10-inch tablet and its first cellular-equipped tablet.

 Also new is Google’s next-generation Nexus smartphone, which is the first Nexus phone made by LG.

All products are designed to deliver what Google calls a “pure Google experience.” All feature Android Jelly Bean OS, with the 10-inch tablet and the smartphone featuring the latest Jelly Bean version (Android 4.2), and the 7-inch tablets featuring Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

The Samsung-made 10-inch tablet, equipped with Wi-Fi, is promoted as the “highest resolution tablet on the planet” with 2,560 by 1,600 display, or more than 4 million pixels.

Nexus phone will be sold unlocked on the Google Play store in 8GB and 16GB versions for use on more than GSM/HSPA+ networks around the worlds, including T-Mobile’s HSPA+42 4G network. The phone lacks 4G LTE. The unlocked version goes on sale on the GooglePlay store on Nov. 13 at $299 for the 8GB model and $349 for the 16GB model. A day later, the 16GB version of the phone will be available locked through select T-Mobile retail stores and T-Mobile’s website.

In the T-Mobile outlets, the locked phone will be priced at $199 with two-year service agreement on a Classic plan. In a Value rate plan, which is priced lower than Classic rate plans, the phone costs $199, plus 20 equal payments of $20/month.

The phone marks the first time that Google has teamed up with LG to build a Nexus phone. Samsung, Motorola and HTC have build Nexus phones in the past.

Key phone features include Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor with 1.5GHz quad-core CPU, 4.7-inch WXGA True HD IPS Plus 320 ppi screen with 1,280 by 768 resolution, 2GB RAM, 8-megapixel rear camera, 1.3-megapixel front HD camera, embedded 2,100mAh lithium-polymer delivering 15.3 hours of talk time or 390 hours of standby, nearfield communications (NFC) and wireless charging. The phone is 5.27 by 2.7 by 0.36 inches in size and weighs 4.9 ounces.

 The phone’s rear 8-megapixel camera features Photo Spheres, which lets users take pictures of everything above, below and around them for inclusion in a single photo. Photos automatically upload themselves to the Cloud.

Other details include gently curved glass edges, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass 2 screen, and the latest version of Google Now built in. The Google Now organization app delivers reminders about upcoming flights, restaurant reservations, hotel confirmations and the like.

Google’s tablet line has expanded its selection, unveiling a new Nexus 7 7-inch tablet in three memory capacities instead of the previous two, adding a cellular-equipped version of the 7-inch tablet, and launching its first 10-inch tablet, the Nexus 10.

The new Wi-Fi-only Nexus 7, equipped with Android 4.1, is available now on the Google Play store in 16GB ($199) and 32GB ($249) versions. That compares with $199 for a previous 8GB model and $249 for a previous 16GB model. The Wi-Fi Nexus 7 will also be available at GameStop, Office Depot, Office Max, Staples and Walmart.

The cellular-equipped version, presumably equipped with Android 4.1 as well, features 32GB of memory and HSPA+ cellular at $299 unlocked. It will be available Nov. 13 in the Google Play store. It operates in more than 200 GSM/HSPA+ networks worldwide, including AT&T in the US.

The 7-inch tablets, made by Asus, feature quad-core four-plus-one CPU, 1,280 by 800 HD display with 216 ppi, NFC and 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera for video chats.

The 10-inch Samsung-made Nexus 10, offered only with Wi-Fi, features Android 4.2, and will be available Nov. 13 in the Google Play at $399 for the 16GB version and at $499 for the 32GB version.

The Nexus 10 is billed as the “highest resolution tablet on the planet, at 2,560 by 1,600 pixels, or more than 4 million pixels. Pixels per inch are 300. The battery provides up to nine hours of video playback and more than 500 hours of standby time. It also features dual speakers. Additional details were not available.

With Android 4.2, the Nexus 10 is the first tablet in which multiple users can log in from the lock screen to access their pre-set settings and content.

Android 4.2 offers such new features as Gesture Typing, which lets you glide your finger over the letters you want to type on the virtual keyboard, and support for Miracast wireless displays, which connect wirelessly to Android 4.2 devices to wirelessly stream movies, YouTube videos and games from the Android devices.