Nexus 7 16GB tablet is back on sale on Google Play store

Some retailers still have the tablet on hold

The Nexus 7 with 16GB of storage reappeared "in stock" Wednesday on the Google Play store after it was unavailable on the site and in many retail stores in the U.S. for about a week.

Google launched its Nexus 7 tablet at its Google I/O conference in San Francisco. (Image: Google)

A Google spokeswoman said Friday that the 16GB version selling for $249 would come back soon to Google Play, but didn't indicate a date. It wasn't immediately clear when the site began re-selling it, and Google didn't respond to a request to comment. The Google Play site says it will take three to five business days to deliver the 16GB version.

The 8 GB version, selling for $199, has been available on Google Play since the Nexus 7 went on sale July 13. In addition to shortages on Google Play, the 16GB version is still listed as on "back order" at GameStop, and for sale "in store only" with a special order at Staples. Various retailers said they had trouble meeting demand for the larger-capacity Nexus 7 nearly from the start of sales.

Gabe Donnini, a data solutions engineer for Chitika Insights, said Google's restock of the 16 GB version didn't come as a surprise. "The company was expending a lot of effort into making sure that they could meet consumer demand," he said."The shortage was never projected to be a long-term issue."

Chitika runs an online advertising network and has been providing monthly measurements of Web usage with various tablet computers in North America.

Chitika found that when the Nexus 7 was released, the tablet "experienced a jump in [Web] usage that has not been seen outside of the iPad."

In a blog, Chitika wrote that the Nexus 7 posted "impressive" Web usage across the Chitika Ad Network "particularly for a device which has only been widely available for such a short period of time."

The iPad far exceeds other tablets in terms of total Web usage, taking 91%. Among all the other tablets, the Samsung Galaxy Tab has the largest share, followed in order by the Acer Iconia, Barnes & Noble Nook, Toshiba Thrive, Asus Transformer, BlackBerry PlayBook, Kindle Fire, Motorola Xoom, and then the Nexus 7. Nexus 7 had a .33% share of the non-iPad tablets in the week from July 16 to 22, Chitika said.

Donnini said that even with the shortage of Nexus 7 16GB units, its usage levels over the Web have put the device on par with other successful tablet launches such as the Kindle Fire, which sold 4 million units in the first quarter on the market at the end of 2011.

"I'd look for the Nexus 7 to establish a leading presence among Android-powered tablets by the end of 2012," Donnini added in an email.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

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