Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG ) Nexus 7 will be a winner. There. I said it.
I've been bullish on the tablet from Day One, while unabashedly bearish on the Nexus Q streaming orb that was unveiled on the same day. As far as the Nexus 7 goes, it's already begun to garner its fair share of positive reviews from the tech world, including All Things D's widely followed Walt Mossberg, who directly called it "a winner."
The Nexus 7 is about to reach the hands of the first round of early buyers, with shipments directly from Google beginning a few days ago. The tablet is also sold through a number of third-party retailers, who carry only the 16 GB model since there's actually some money to be made there. Here's the great sign you came here for: The Nexus 7 is already sold out almost everywhere.
That doesn't say anything about how many each retailer was getting, though. For example, online retailer Abt said it got only "about a hundred" and GameStop (NYSE: GME ) has already sold out its first wave of preorders and won't get more until August. Still, the fact that nearly every retailer is sold out is a very healthy sign of robust demand for the new device.
Even buying directly from Google through its Google Play store, where both the 8 GB and 16 GB models are available, will leave you twiddling your thumbs for a week or two before it ships.
Good news for the Nexus 7 means bad news for Amazon.com's (Nasdaq: AMZN ) Kindle Fire, at least in its current iteration. Google has Amazon beat in nearly every department here when it comes to hardware, and the two devices share the same price point. For now, Amazon still has an advantage in tablet-related content like e-books and such, but the Nexus 7 is undoubtedly off to a strong start.
The real test of the Nexus 7's resilience will be how the market responds to Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL ) virtually inevitable iPad Mini, which is expected to be slightly larger and carry a modest price premium. Both the iPad Mini and Kindle Fire 2 aren't expected for a few more months, so Google will have some time to gallivant around mostly unsupervised.
The search giant had better make the most of its time, because this tablet war is about to heat up big time.
Apple's iPad Mini is one potential reason the company still has growth momentum in store. Sign up for this brand-new premium Apple research service to find out what else the iPad maker has in its future.