Google’s Tablet Hits Spain, France and Germany

-World Waits for Apple’s ‘iPad Mini’ Response

Google’s Nexus 7 tablet has entered Spain, France and Germany this month, further positioning Google to make serious in-roads in the tablet market. The tablet is priced at €199 ($249) for the 8 GB and €249 ($312) for the 16 GB, and a purchase comes with a $25 credit at the Google Play Store – though not all the magazines and music are available in those markets yet.

The Nexus 7 tablet launched in the US, UK, Australia and Canada earlier this year, and has received positive reviews from users. The 7-inch tablet is equipped with a Nvidia Tegra 3 processor and sells for under $300, placing the tablet in a comfortable mid-point between the expensive iPad and the $99 Amazon Kindle Fire. Amazon’s Kindle Fire was a popular purchase during the last holiday season, but sales and shipments have slowed significantly since then.

Google is looking to get its tablets to Europe as soon as possible. A full-fledged European launch is reportedly scheduled for September 3, just three days before Amazon’s September 6 unveiling of the newest version of the Kindle Fire.

The Kindle Fire has been slow to expand outside the US, and is still not available in the UK, giving Google an advantage over Amazon in the International markets.

That leaves Apple to make a move. Apple has already lost the 2012 back-to-school market in 7-inchers – except for those that bought the $500 iPad 2. It cannot afford to miss the year-end shopping season, which starts mid-November. We at The Online Reporter believe Apple will not cede the 7-inch market to Google, and will release a smaller-screened “iPad mini” soon. The rumor mill is reporting that the iPad mini is expected to launch at a scheduled October 5 press event, about a month after the iPhone 5 will debut in September.

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