Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) landing page is a testament to minimalist design. Save for the often clever interactive logo doodles, Google.com is little more than a search box and a pair of buttons.

Well, yesterday the website also became the platform to promote its Nexus 7 tablet.

"The playground is open," reads the animated ad with the Android device bumping up against the text. "The new $199 tablet from Google."

Clicking on the attention-grabbing ad -- made all the more noticeable because Google rarely uses its home page to pitch things -- takes visitors to a page that delves into the gadget's impressive features. There's also the limited-time bonus of $25 in Google Play credit and a copy of Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Pretty sneaky, Big G.

We're now just a week away from Amazon.com's (Nasdaq: AMZN) big media event. It's very likely that the leading online retailer will introduce a new line of Kindle Fire tablets. A day earlier there's a Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) presser. That one's likely to be a smartphone-oriented event, but you never know when Mr. Softy is going to open up with prices and release dates for its upcoming Surface gadgets.

A week after that it's Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) time to shine.

The Sept. 12 event should be anchored by the iPhone 5, but it would also be an opportune time to introduce the rumored iPad mini device that will give the world's most valuable company an easier way to battle the entry-level tablets by Amazon, Google, and Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) that have drawn a line in the sand at $199.

This all makes it easy to forgive Google from breaking from the ad-free nature or its homepage, or recalling that this strategy didn't work out so well when the search star was pitching Nexus One smartphones on its home page.

See, as great as the Nexus 7 is -- and the value proposition is awesome -- it's going to get lost in the tide of hype washing ashore in September. Google knows that now is the best time to strike, while its trendy tablet is the flavor of the moment.

Google rarely leans on its home page for marketing support, so the company may as well make it count when it does.This shows how seriously Google takes the threat in Cupertino. But that same threat for Google can be an opportunity for investors. We highlight every aspect of the Apple investment thesis in our new premium report on Apple. The report includes a full year of updates, so time's ticking. Check it out now.