Jun 17 AT 11:36 AM Dustin Earley 542 Comments

One year later, the Nexus 7 has gone from the best to worst tablet I’ve ever owned

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The first time I used a Nexus 7, I was blown away. It was the perfect form factor for Android, and probably the best Android device I had ever used at the time. All for just $200. You simply couldn’t ask for more in a device. One year later, I’m changing my tune. My Nexus 7 is just a shell of its former self, and an embarrassment to Google.

I don’t remember when it first started happening, but most say it was when Android 4.2 began hitting devices. The new features and changes in Jelly Bean, 4.2, were certainly welcome additions, but my Nexus’ new found love of life in the slow-lane was not. I have not spent a full year using the Nexus 7 as a daily driver, only the last six months. So at first, I didn’t notice just how bad things had gotten. I thought maybe it was an illusion from using so many high-end Android phones. Until I started asking around.

I can’t find one person who has been using the Nexus 7 for an extended period of time, and hasn’t seen a massive downgrade in performance. Just what kind of downgrade are we talking here? I cannot pick up my Nexus 7 without experiencing problems like a lag of ten seconds, or more, just to rotate the display; touches refusing to acknowledged; stuttering notification panel actions; and unresponsive apps.

I tried the basics at first, like a factory reset. I then moved onto drastic measures, like rooting and installing CyanogenMod 10.1 (which I thought would surely fix everything, since I’ve used faster devices with lesser hardware, and performance problems were merely a lack of software optimization). And nothing seems to work. Using CyanogenMod worked at first, but things have slowed down dramatically again. I’ve tried uninstalling most of my apps. Using replacement launchers. No widgets. Nothing works. And even if any of those things did work, it would still be terrible looking for Google.

Other companies, take Amazon for example, have seemingly mastered the budget to performance ratio in affordable tablets in no time. It may have taken a couple generations, which is why I still have hope for the successor to the Nexus 7, but even the first generation Kindle Fire stands up better against the Nexus 7. I can only imagine how the latest Galaxy Tab, Kindle Fire HD, or dare I say the more expensive iPad Mini, would completely knock it out of the park.

I used to love my Nexus 7. I want to love it again. Have you experienced any similar problems with a Nexus 7, or has your experience been the exact opposite?

Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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