More rumors point toward a weaker, cheaper $100 Nexus tablet

google nexus 7 android tablet

This month Google announced three new additions to its Nexus family, but the search engine giant may not be finished just yet. Rumors indicate that a $100 version of the Nexus 7 tablet could be in the works, and recently discovered benchmarks have sparked further curiosity in this notion. A new set of test results on the GLBenchmarks website indicates that manufacturer Asus could be testing a new tablet. The device, branded with the model number ASUS ME172V, delivers tech specs that appear to be a toned-down version of those found in the current Nexus 7.

The rumored tablet will allegedly come with a 400MHz Mali GPU, a 1GHz CPU core and a screen resolution of 1024 x 600 megapixels. There has been no mention of a screen size, but the low cost hints that it will be a scaled-down version of a seven-inch tablet. According to the website, the device will also ship with Android 4.1 out of the box.

While these pieces of hardware bear similarity to the Nexus 7, there is one feature that strays from the 7-inch tablet’s build: the device found on GLBenchmarks has a microSD card slot. This is probably the biggest piece of evidence against the argument that this Asus gadget is a lower-end Nexus 7.

However, until we hear more information from the manufacturer or Google, there is no way to know for sure. Asus could be creating a new low-cost Android tablet to sell in markets around the globe where affordable prices are held at a higher priority than speedy processors and mind-blowing specs.

The specifications found on the benchmarking website also align with previous rumors that surfaced on just a few days ago. In addition to the hardware mentioned above, the African news source also said that the device would come with 8GB of storage and a 4270mAh battery. An Asus company representative reportedly shared this information with iAfrica.

Since its debut back in July, Asus’ Nexus 7 tablet has seen a largely positive reception in the tablet market. At the end of October, the Wall Street Journal reported that sales of the 7-inch slate are clocking in at about one million units per month. While this still falls behind Apple’s iPad sales, the Nexus 7’s numbers could grow following the introduction of a 32GB model.