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Google unveils Nexus 7 tablet

Hugo Barra, director of product management at Google Inc., holds the Nexus 7 on June 27, 2012. GETTY IMAGES/BLOOMBERG/David Paul Morris.

Google Inc. unveiled its Nexus 7 tablet at a developer’s conference in San Francisco on Wednesday as well as its new operating system, Android 4.1.

The seven-inch, flat screen device runs on Android 4.1, code-named Jelly Bean, said director of Android product management Hugo Barra, at the Google I/O developer conference.

The 8GB version will retail for about $199 US and the 16GB version will cost $249.

Unlike the larger Apple iPad, which boasts a 10-inch panel, the size of the Nexus is more in line with e-readers like Amazon’s Kindle.

The Google tablet links directly to the Google Play store, so users can purchase content like movies, books and music.

The Nexus weighs 340 grams and comes with a built-in 1.2 megapixel camera. It has a 1,280 x 800 display, a chipset from Nvidia with a quad-core CPU and a 12-core graphics processor.

Earlier this month, Microsoft Corp. launched the Surface tablet to compete with the iPad. The Surface is the first commercial PC that Microsoft has directly designed and sold.