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The Nexus 9 Is Android's iPad Air

Illustration for article titled The Nexus 9 Is Androids iPad Air

It's been nearly two years since we've seen a new Nexus tablet, but the wait is over. Alongside a new Nexus 6 phone, the Nexus Player, and a new version of Android, the Nexus 9 is finally official. It's like the iPad Air, but Android.

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Just as the rumors indicated, the new Nexus 9 is a 9-inch tablet made by HTC, sporting front-facing speakers, a 2048 x 1440 281 PPI LCD screen, and a 6700 mAh battery. For it's brain, it doesn't just have your garden variety Tegra K1 found in tablets like Nvidia's shield tab; this is the beefed up version that pairs two 64-bit Project Denver CPUs with a full on GPU based on Nvidia's desktop, Kepler architecture.

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It's got a nice aluminum trim, and on the back it has that familiar soft-touch carbonate back and "Nexus" branding, like an upscaled Nexus 5. And it's available in white and black and tan. And also, if you feel like Surfacing it up, the Nexus 9 has a an optional keyboard case that will retail for $130.

Illustration for article titled The Nexus 9 Is Androids iPad Air

It's a Nexus device launching around the same time as a major revision of Android, so naturally it'll come loaded up with Android Lollipop. It's available for pre-order starting October 17th, with a starting price of $400. It'll hit stores on 11/3, with an LTE version coming later this year.

So what happened to the Nexus 7? It's hard to say. The tablet's been out of stock for ages now, and Google's snazzy new Nexus landing page features the 5, the 6, and the 9. But in a world where phones are creeping up on 6-inches, the case for a 7-inch tablet—especially one with a slim 16:9 aspect ratio like the Nexus 7's—is harder than ever to make. In this brave new Google world, it looks like you've got your pick of phones, bigger phones, and tablets.

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DISCUSSION

The Nexus 9 is $400 but the Nexus 6 is $650. What the hell.