Are Google Nexus 7 Tablets Deteriorating Over Time?

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nexus 7Over at Android and Me, Dustin Earley is reporting that his Nexus 7 “has gone from the best to worst tablet I’ve ever owned.”

That’s a pretty bold statement, and I had to read the article and browse the comments.

According to Earley, his once-beloved Nexus 7, which used to be responsive and snappy, is now slow, ponderous and sluggish, often taking several seconds to respond to screen rotation and taps.

He had a dramatic quote:

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.

Not surprisingly, the comments on the post were mixed. There were a lot of “me too” comments, often with descriptions of what they had tried to revive their struggling tablets. However, there were also a good number of people who responded with some variation on “still running smoothly.”

I’ll be curious to see if the problem is limited to the early production runs. In an article on Apple Insider, which covered the story in more detail, they quoted an Asus representative:

Google wanted the device to be “fast, cheap and good,” as well as “thin and light,” and ready to debut by that summer’s Google I/O conference. This placed extreme design challenges on Asus.

It’s possible future production runs fixed some of the problems and later tablets may not have the same problems.

I’ve only had my Nexus 7 since January, so I’m well short of the year mark, but it’s still a snappy and responsive device for me. I’ve noted, however, that screen rotation was never as smooth as my iPad, and I’ve got it locked in portrait because it had a tendency to rotate when I didn’t want it to and then slowly rotate back. I have the same problem on my Nook HD, though, so it might be an OS problem, not hardware.

Anyone else want to share their experiences with their Nexus 7 tablets?

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  • rafahat

    My nexus 7 is the best tablet I’ve owned it still runs smoothly I’ve reached the one year mark with my device and I’ve never saw a performance issue of any kind if are experiencing trouble with the n7 try a factory reset

  • evobike

    Had my nexus 7 for about 2 months now’ its a 32gb machine. In all its small lifespan its been snappy, light and agile, the reason for this being I have kept apps limited, always being wary of how quick that space can fill and slow down the machine. On the other hand I have a third party tablet as well with 16gb and an additional 42gb SD card and all my apps on this machine are loaded onto it without lag.
    At the moment I feel people and the media are bashing the 7 because there is a new sibling in the wings and we have to justify why we want to buy the new kid on the block!
    I don’t think jb 4.2 has been the best move yet and maybe 4.3 may iron problems out, but technology moves on a pace.
    2 years ago I could play BBC iPlayer on a 1.2ghz laptop, now with player updates and visual enhancements its unusable on my old laptop. Progress for the sakes of it is not always for the best.

  • Andy B

    Had mine since October last year. Use it more than 7 hours a day,everyday. Still as fast and smooth as the day I got it. Play real racing 3 a lot. No lag at all.

  • Tom

    I think this could be true, I got my 16gb nexus about a month possibly two after release and it is going really slow at time’s rotates slow, sometimes just powering it up from standby takes a few seconds and sometimes hangs for about 20 seconds out of apps. where my brother who had a 32gb nexus around 5 ,months ago runs smooth as you like, just like new.

  • Kent

    I have owned a Nexus 7 since the first day they became available in my area. I rooted it with Smooth ROM probably about a week after. I haven’t noticed any sort of downgrade in performance and I use it every day for email, watching movies, browsing the internet and playing games. I am delighted with its stability and performance thus far. I also look forward to purchasing the next Nexus 7 2 soon as well.

  • DMK82

    I found downloading a file maintenance app helped with my lag. Android seems to like saving thumbnails and cookies so its a good idea to clear em out every now n again I guess.

  • Jivester

    I have had my Nexus 7 since they were released. Like others’ my tablet slowed down considerably with the 4.2+ updates (disregarding the charging issue). I have since completed a factory reset, wiping my cache and deleting multiple user profiles. Since then (3 months ago) my Nexus 7 has remained as snappy and wonderful as the day I got it. Although I believe a consumer shouldn’t have to take the steps I took to remain having a viable tablet, it would still be what I consider the best $250 tablet out there and love the Nexus experience. I would be curious how many people who have had issues have multiple profiles vs. those who do not? I think it has something to do with Android’s profile support but that is just a hunch.

  • Andy Poole

    I have to agree with the writer. I’ve had my device for a year now and the performance is awful compared to how it was originally. It’s slow, lags, freezes and is just generally poor and not the wonderful device it once was!

  • http://www.femalehealthmadesimple.com52 Johan

    Bought two mid Sept. Both stil performing smooth and fast. (16G)

    The upgrade did not cause any noticible performance issue!

  • Michael C

    No problems here; though I did notice Dolphin HD Mini acts little weird, but that’s probably the app itself. I own two Nexus 7’s. I don’t use them everyday and I don’t keep a lot of Apps on them. I’m also pretty good about keeping them clean of cookies and thumbs so maybe that’s why. I’ve owned mine since January.

  • Kevin D

    I’ve had mine for almost a year now and use every day for work, surfing and an occasional game. mind’s still running great, no lag other than at times browsing using Chrome and Firefox. I can’t remember if was always that way or if any slowdown lately, regardless, not that bad. Good to go and ready to buy the new version next month or so !

  • chelle

    I have had my 32gb n7 since January, all I can say is I love my little gadget. Had no problems to speak of, nothing that a reboot didn’t fix. Will be sticking with it for seeable future

  • Michel

    I only got my N7 recently, so I was very concerned when I read the article. I also have a TF700 (also a Asus device based on Tegra 3) which was lagging a lot after almost a year of use. Read a lot about Asus tablets not trimming there SSD’s properly. So I tried a lagfix app to trim the storage memory, and voila. Smooth as an androids bottom again!
    Perhaps that will do the trick for slow N7’s as well.

  • Mathew

    Ihave toagree,owned mine for about 6 months and performance is awful, also i am geting shadowing on screen to.

    For example I’m using google chrome then close it and can see the chrome browser as a shadow on home screen, not sure whether to send it directly to asus as carphone warehouse said they will send it off for inspection and repair or replace it, when i phoned asus they said they would repair it.

    well unhappy at the moment with my nexus 7.

  • Mathew

    anyone advise on what i should do ? no laptop atm so if i send it off i have no way accessing the internet etc.

  • Juli Monroe

    So a quick tally of responses so far.

    7 having no problems and still loving the device
    4 had some problems but were able to work around them, leaving you basically happs
    2 having significant issues and unhappy with the device

    Unscientific, but it’s looking like the Nexus 7 is still a good device, which matches my experience. Thanks to everyone who responded. Feel free to keep replying.

  • Ace Hole

    I have had my Nexus for around 6 month and use it regularly for viewing hard core pornography. It works very well for this and I haven’t noticed any slow down or sluggishness. I suspect this is an issue with the original batch.

  • Denny

    I ordered mine in July 2012. I have not noticed any decline in performance and I use it daily. I have a 16mb model and it’s the best tablet I’ve ever owned. Am anxious to see if they announce a 32gb 4g model. I ‘d buy it in a heartbeat!!!

  • constanius

    Nexus7 32gig since Nov. Just as fast as ever, coud not be more delighted with it. Always on, loads of apps.

  • TG

    After 7 months of heavy use, still snappy. No complaints here, great value.

  • Satchmo Armstrong

    Key is to edit number of active apps, and use a good application cache cleaner and memory cleaner keeps it humming

  • bethoven

    I bought my tablet last December and it still perfectly! Even without root. I don’t know why they are many issues always popping out about their nexus 7 but i think they are just making it up.
    No person who havent have issues using their nexus 7?
    What a foolish statement

  • StrawDog

    I am starting to have bad lag problems, particularly with Tweetcaster but also like right now, typing is lagging on this message. Only 47% available storage used. Am running a launcher (Nova). No aftermarket keyboard though. I know it’s lagging when apps update in background, but there are other times. When it is at its worst the screen goes black during a task and stays that way until I contemplate how to shut down. I won’t be happy until I find & solve whatever is working so hard that it interferes with what I’m actually trying to do!

  • jcs94hokie

    Just like a PC, you need to know how to maintain your tablet. If you let it get filled up with hundreds of apps, cookies, and other crap, it WILL slow down. There are tons of resources online to teach you how to get the most out of your Nexus 7. Do a little research people!

  • elias

    What? I’ve had my nexus 7 with me since september 2012 and it’s still as fast, snappy as it could ever be since I boughht it. I’m always giving the tab a beating, running heavy tegra games, emulating ps1 games, picture editting, heavy torrents and I’ve seen no slow downs at all. Except when I tried those useless widgets and launchers. Keep it simple guys.

    I’m the only one with a nexus 7 at work and I’d say, only one tab creamed it, the note2 10.1. All other tabs used by my workmates simply just fall like flies compared to the nexus7

  • andymccreddie

    I know it sounds pretty drastic, but a factory reset restores Nexus 7 to new performance. I did it a couple of weeks ago and found that practically everything had been backed up. Any important files were in Dropbox. Even all the apps came back and the the space remaining increased by about two thirds. I now have one blisteringly fast Nexus 7 back.

  • Spyros

    I bought my 32g nexus 7 last October, been using it 2-8 hours per day and still totally happy with it. Haven’t noticed any downgrade in performance or battery life.
    Not planning on upgrading to the nexus 2 for the moment.

  • keith whisman

    Download and install a free app from the Google play app store on your tablet called lagfix and run it.

  • Iain

    Mine became unusably slow and laggy after about 9 months. Did the TRIM fix to reset the memory and now it’s back to normal performance.

  • Ben

    I bought mine in July 2012. It frequently rebooted itself (2-3 times a week) and did not handle low battery well. Finally in April it went into an infinite reboot loop. Google replaced it and the new one has no such problems . But I did not experience a gradual degradation on the original N7 – it was always a bit flaky until it’s final, fatal problem.

  • alvin

    it would always depend on the owner/user on how he uses his gadget and what he expects from the gadget… no matter how fast or sloppy our units are, it would always depend on us. i am a nexus7 user… so far, so much good and going better.

  • martin

    Bought my Nexus 7 in mid November 2012. 7 months of using it about every other day. Apart from one or two oddities to do with the implementation of android, I love this device. No hint of slowing down. But then I am only half way to the one year hit. So I am apprehensive. For now, it is everything I wanted it to be.

  • aj shorter

    Have had my Nx7 for 6 months. Only problem I’ve had is apps that load at startup and stay resident after termination. These poorly designed apps hog memory, cause lag, degrade performance and even cause harmful charging problems. The Nx7 itself is wonderful and real powerhouse for the money.

  • Taylor

    Bought my 32 GB N7 in February 2013. It sees 4+ hours a use daily between my girlfriend, kids, and I. Still runs factory smooth. Rooted a stock kernel immediately upon arrival. It has been so consistent I actually download more apps(games, news, videos) then when I used my galaxy s and s2 smartphones. And they’re going to be adding better resolution and processor, I think I’ll have no choice but to buy another one.

  • Carlos

    I’ve had mine since September.. 16/GB and it runs smoothly only problem I’ve noticed was it takes longer to charge after most recent update

  • My Nexus7 is best

    It is the best tablet i`ve eher owned. It`s very fast and I love it!

  • Jim sanuk

    I run JB 4.2.2 and have not noticed any slow down. I have 32GB and 27 GB free. I did run CPU-Z and it said I was near maxed out my RAM. That is 1GB so I unloaded some unnecessary programs. I think that is one of the issues with heavy users. The other problem may be trim control on the memory chips. I try to stay away from maxing out my ram as I think that will slow r/w speeds.

  • Kirke

    I’ve had my 16mb nexus 7 since they were released. I have noticed some lag on occasion since the 4.2 update, but a reboot usually fixes the problem. I’ve never rooted my nexus, and keep it cleaned with clean sweep; which I believe has helped a lot.

  • djlsnuff

    My n7 was ordered pre release. 16gb. Updated to jb 4.2. Still great (except charging time)

  • Joe Cruz

    Still a great buy! I bought one of the original 8 gig Nexus 7 last October and I’m still very happy with it. Still running well.

  • Clayton

    I have had my 16gb Nexus 7 since they were first available and I have installed several custom ROMs on it with absolutely no degredation. I am now running the Buttered AOKP 4.2.2 ROM and I am proud to say I still love my Nexus7.

  • gerry

    Send my n7 for repair for charging, very short turn around, back in 4 days and works like new. Loaded with apps, wish my phone worked as well. Purchased 09/29/12 would not charge 45 days later. Asus did excellent repairs. And n7 runs fast and better than ever.:-)

  • Al-Akhyar

    My nexus also gets laggy over time, but gets fresher once i keep the storage about at least 2 GB vacant by deleting & uninstalling some junk & unused apps & data. 16gb storage makes it difficult though.

  • Bob

    My Nexus became sluggish after a few months. I read that doing a factory reset and then restoring apps and media coyuod resolve the issue and it worked well. A few months later my nexus became sluggish again, factory reset and restore worked again.

  • Derek

    More than likely the diversity of apps installed rather than hardware. Try a hard reset and watch your nexus come back to life. You may want to avoid the shaking boobies app. Just saying.

  • Denise

    I’ve had my 16g N7 since last August, and I am still in love. I am on it for hours every day. No lag problems or other issues, that I have noticed.

  • Juli Monroe

    All right. As I suspected. A story blown way out of proportion. Thanks again for all your responses! Most comments I’ve ever received on a post. :)

  • gregory dearth

    I bought an ASUS 10″ Memo Pad2, which has the same specs and components (other than the larger screen) as a Nexus 7. Even the resolution is the same despite the larger display. I personally dont have an issue with the resolution. It is also very snappy once booted but I do notice slow rotating on the lock screen. Even if my tablet is stationary, awakening it from sleep starts a process where the various elements of the lock screen seem confused and take some time to move around until setteling into their propper sizes and positions. Often this process of re-organizing the keypad (for my 4 digit access pin) and the widget with the time display takes longer than the timeout for the screen, requiring that I wake it up twice, once to make it reorganize and again to wake it up so I have time to punch in the 4 digit code. The ROM Asus uses on my tablet was a Nexus ROM, but as of the last update they are using a Transformer version of 4.2.1. Other than this weird issue with the lock screen, the rotation is quite snappy and smooth and I have stuffed a lot of apps on the pad. This seems like a software issue. Why wouldnt Android just remember where to put the widget and keypad on the lock screen instead of jumbling around with their aspects every time I wake up my device? This is even more laggy when actually booting from an off state.