Got Yourself A Fancy New Nexus Flexus

9/13/2012 3:47:14 PM

Got yourself a fancy new Google Nexus 7 tablet? Ian McGurren has a few things to make it fancier

By now, hopefully you'll all have your Nexus 7 tablets, and the fun of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean has taken the edge off any ill feelings from Google's less than smooth launch (no official release date? On sale in shops before pre-orders are shipped? Bad Google, go to your room). Naturally, then, you'll want all manner of apps and assorted bits and bobs to make the most of it. Well, read on...

Description: Description: Google Nexus 7 tablet

Google Nexus 7 tablet

Application Temptation

Media: As the Nexus 7 is a powerful little four-cored beast with a HD screen, it's a perfect mobile media unit. Fancy playing some 720p MKVs? Take a look at Diceplayer, a media player that takes advantage of the Tegra CPU. You can then stream from a DLNA source with Mediahouse or if you have a Plex server, you can use the Android Plex client instead. You can even use MediaHouse to stream video stored on the device to a DLNA-enabled TV, getting round the lack of HDMI out. What's more, the future will also see a fully featured version of XBMC.

Reading: For those who've chosen a Nexus 7 over a Kindle or even in advance of a UK-released Kindle Fire, you'll be glad to know that the Amazon Kindle app is available and works in pretty much the same way as it does on the regular Kindle, including access to any ebooks you've purchased from Amazon beforehand.

Gaming: Being a Tegra device, the Nexus 7 is compatible with the special Tegra THD editions of some high-end games including classic shooter Max Payne, gravity puzzler Puddle and third-person shooter Shadowgun. All now boast console-quality graphics and will cost you less than $4.5 each.

Camera: Somewhat strangely for a device with a built-in camera, the Nexus 7 does not come with any camera app. However, this won't be a concern for most, as it's a front facing camera, and a lowly 1.3MP one at that. However, it's always useful to have one anyway, so to the rescue comes the UK's excellent smartphone site with the snappily titled 'Camera Launcher for Nexus 7' - no prizes then for guessing what it does. You'll find it in the Play Store now.

Description: Are you missing the camera feature on your Google Nexus 7?

Are you missing the camera feature on your Google Nexus 7?

Cover Lover

Though only one case has been officially announced for the Nexus 7 so far, its success will ensure that there will soon be plenty available.

In the meantime, there are cheap options to keep it safe, such as the small computer neoprene sleeves available in many pound shops. There's also the smarter Rocketfish 7" leather case available at Carphone Warehouse for a very reasonable £5.

Stick Trick

Much has been made of the Nexus's lack of a micro-SD slot, making adding more storage impossible and loading up films a chore. However, with some minor hacking the device can be rooted and then with the StickMount app it can run as a USB on-the-go host. This then opens up the option of external USB storage with a USB OTG cable and a pen drive. It's not pretty but it's very useful. Pop on over to the XDA Developers forum (bit. Iy/xdanexus7) for all the inside information on Nexus 7 hacking.

Google's Nexus 7 is a cracking piece of kit for the price of a couple of tanks of petrol, and represents far more fun. Hopefully some of the tips above will add to that enjoyment (the Nexus 7, not a tank of petrol). Keep an eye out for more hacks and ROMs in the future.

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