Nexus 7s

Owners of original Nexus 7's with sluggish performance should see a speed boost after the update

It seems that the curious case of the sluggish Nexus 7 has been solved with the inclusion of TRIM support in Android 4.3. TRIM is essentially a way for the device's software to communicate with the on-board storage to let it know when blocks are sitting unused and ready for garbage collection. This is a necessary process, because when a user "deletes" files on a device, the file isn't actually removed from storage but simply marked as being available space to be cleared later when it is needed by the system. Unless TRIM is working to actually clear up those unused blocks, they will still be considered full by the storage itself.

For previous versions of Android TRIM wasn't enabled, which led to slower and slower I/O performance over time -- something that hit the Nexus 7 particularly hard. Luckily thanks to some investigation and testing by AnandTech, it is confirmed that the Android 4.3 update is bringing TRIM support to not only the Nexus 7 but every Nexus device.

Once updated to the latest version of Android, TRIM will attempt to do this garbage collection roughly once every 24 hours depending on the circumstances. If the device has been inactive for at least an hour, hasn't checked for criteria to clean in the last 24 hours and the device is either charging above 30-percent battery or not charging above 80-percent battery, the system will go through the storage and clean up unused blocks.

Because this is an issue that is only noticeable when a device has been used without wiping for some time, it may not be immediately apparent that TRIM is doing its job after the update. What you should see after moving to 4.3 is more consistent performance over time on your devices no matter how much data you move around on the storage.

Source: AnandTech


Reader comments

Nexus devices updated to Android 4.3 will now have TRIM support


I used to use Forever Gone on my stock, unrooted 16GB Nexus 7 (2012). When the storage goes under 3GB, even browsing in Chrome becomes so unbearable and for a time I wasn't using the tablet for browsing, just for some apps, games and Google Now. After using that app, even if it only has 2.5GB left, the difference is night and day. Browsing is definitely faster. I also used AndroBench for verification. True enough, it did its job.

Anyway, that was when I was on 4.2.2. After updating to 4.3, I noticed that it was fairly fast and the lag on the widget gallery is gone on the stock launcher. However, when I ran Forever Gone again, to my surprise my Nexus 7 became so unbearably slow that apps and even android processes are force closing. I guess, I disabled it by running the app again. I had no choice but to factory reset it.

Now, my Nexus 7 is very fast and stable and I still have lots of storage left. One regret though, even if I used Helium to back up app data and having full back up as well, some apps just can't be restored hence I lost most of the app data (scores and achievements) in those apps. Oh well at least I have the screenshots. LOL

Ever since I installed 4.3.3 on my N7 my screen has been flickering in a scrolling motion up every time I'm in the chrome browser, never had this problem before the update a few days ago.

Please post a pic of your phone settings. I'd love to see version 4.3.3. Thought 4.3.1 was in the works, but perhaps Nexus has 4.3.3 out already.

Perhaps we can all come to our senses regarding the extremely limited storage that Google services are shipping with. It's 2013, 64 is not expensive to manufacture with.

I wonder if a 64GB version will follow up just like the 32GB version of the original was released a few months after.

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No, the reason why google is lowering the storage in all devices is because they want people using their Drive Storage and streaming everything. In a time when the top two carriers are price gouging data plans it kind of sucks that gogle wants to minimize memory in devices. If verizon had their way all their devices would come with 16 gb so people would eat as much data as possible.

When the original nexus 7 and 4 came out they limited the memory because Drive was brand new and they were pushing hard to get as many people as possible to use it to get it "mainstream." I have a 32 gb Gnex and that's not a lot for me and had to get GDrive storage option, but I have a lot of HD movies and they eat a lot of data.

Hopefully Google will realize soon that people even with large storage on their devices are still going to use cloud storage and will start boosting the memory in their devices.

Great, while the new Nexus is great, this first gen has some life in it still. I think it will carry my over to the third gen.

Yeah, I was ready to buy the new Nexus 7, but now mine works great! Hopefully I can hold out until next year!

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I just forced my update yesterday and after removing my account and adding it back in (necessary or else Play Store fails during downloads for installs and updates), I've noticed my N7 being sluggish a couple of times. I hope this brings an improvement to performance because with the N7 2.0 not having Pogo pins, I'm not sure I want to swap just yet until a smart dock is released for it. I like the dock right now too much to toss my N7.

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My Google Nexus did that with the play store when I got 4.2.2 but my son's 7 play store had no problem after the 4.2.3 update.

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true that, i need the dock. waited too long for it, but at least now i have something. depending on when/if a dock comes out for new nexus7 and how much this TRIM update helps, i may just forgo this generation.

What this does not fix on the N7 2012 though, is the low memory bandwidth and terrible gpu performance of the Tegra3 SoC.
Remember when everyone was clapping when they heard it had a quad core cpu? Tegra 3 was hyped too much.
The S4 Pro SoC is definitely a much better choice by Google this time around.


Incorrect, the new Nexus 7 uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro, 1.5GHz, as stated on Google Play.

"What this does not fix on the N7 2012 though, is the low memory bandwidth and terrible gpu performance of the Tegra3 SoC."

Combine that with super slow storage, and you have a nightmare. The trim 'fix' is highly overrated.

That said, I updated my N7 2012 to 4.3, and while scrolling and animations were smoother, it become completely unusable. Where I'd get a stutter here and there before, along with just plain shoddy disk performance, now I'm getting longer pauses which can no longer be defined as "stutter".

It's much worse for me. Much, much worse.

My original N7 is running a little snappier after the update today. I think I'll keep on keeping on til gen 3. Sorry goog you can have my tablet money next year... You already got a impulse-buy $35 last week. :-)

I'm still waiting for my update too. My wife's Nexus 4 got it today and it's newer than mine... >.>

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So far I have only had the odd system crash and reboot here and there. I guess that second OTA for the new N7 might fix that =)

is this TRIM feature only exclusive to 4.3 Nexus? Or all 4.3 will have this? I wonder if Samsung is going to implement it as well. I find my Tab 2 also sluggish over time.

We'll find out when someone releases a 4.3 update for a non-Nexus device. It's up to Samsung.

I got 4.3 on my nexus 7 days ago but still nothing on my nexus 4.. Though I think my nexus 7 needed it more tbh

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My nexus 7 operated great without the update to 4.3. Now I get lag so bad I can hardly type. I have a 16gb with 5gb free. This sucks. I was really excited to have better performance, instead I get slower performance.

For it's true since day one, last friday. I almost saw immediatly the difference. As I sideloaded the upgrade, it came to manage my existing set-up. And I noticed an immediate speed increase. And I didn't knew about trim.
Way to go Google!
By the way, anybody heard of 4.3 for Google phone, what a scam!
Wanna Google phone, buy a Nexus!

I wonder if this will help all the other ASUS tablets with terrible I/O performance (when CM 10.2 is released on them, of course). My TF300 is starting to lag when tap the app drawer button and swipe in the app drawer. I'm sure there are a lot of other people like me who really enjoyed their ASUS tablets aside from the I/O issues. It would be great if it could perform to its full potential.

I'll say that both of my OG N7s are quicker now. I had no idea why, nor do I really care, as long as it is faster.

I flash my Nexi devices too often to notice this, it would seem, but am I really the first person to ask why the heck Google waited until 4.3 to implement such a citical process?

I was noticing some huge lag time on my Nexus 7. I updated the other night and noticed a HUGE speed boost as soon as it rebooted. I thought it was just something they upgraded that made the OS more efficient. I'm glad to see this, I was starting to think my Nexus 7 was dying or something. I'm super stoked now.

From what I have read google have stated that TRIM is a part of 4.3 in general so anyone using 4.3 (even the OEMs) should benefit from it