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Android 4.1, code-named Jelly Bean, is one of the Nexus 7's greatest assets. It's an apropos combination: the Nexus 7 is a tablet aficionado’s hard candy, and Android turns out to be a delicious filling. Google is using its first tablet offering as an opportunity to debut Jelly Bean, which contains several usability improvements, including voice dictation (read all about the operating system's new features).
As a hardware guy, however, it's also easy to be impressed by how Jelly Bean affects the Nexus 7’s CPU and GPU performance.
Google claims that Jelly Bean’s internal improvements make the Android user experience so much smoother that the company internally dubbed its efforts “Project Butter.” Page 2 of Reporting From Google I/O 2012: Nexus 7 And Jelly Bean (Android 4.1)details many of the enhancements, but we'll review some of the raw benchmarks comparing Jelly Bean to its predecessor, Ice Cream Sandwich. According to Android engineering director Dave Burke, the core changes include:
In practice, battery life seems largely unaffected moving from Ice Cream Sandwich to Jelly Bean.