Rumor: Asus Google Nexus tablet will cost $150-$200

It seems increasingly likely that when Google actively helps create an Android tablet, it will specifically target the Kindle Fire.

Rather than going for a $500 – $600 tablet that would be a direct competitor to the iPad and be in the same market as the Samsung Galaxy Tab or the Motorola Xyboard, reports suggest it will be around $200 or potentially even less than that.

Although the Nexus phones are seen as one streamlined line of devices, they’ve been made by different manufacturers and available on different carriers so Google doesn’t look like it’s playing favorites.

It’s been rumored for some time that Google was also toiling behind-the-scenes to come up with a Nexus-branded tablet, but the question of which manufacturer would get the honors has been largely mysterious.

Earlier this month, it came out of the woodwork that Asus might the manufacturer of choice, since it is well known for creating low-cost electronics.

According to The Verge, the Nexus tablet is likely to cost around $199, while Android and Me pins an even more optimistic $149 price tag.

Both suggest it would be a 7-inch device, making it a notably different product than the iPad, seeming to suggest that Google itself doesn’t see much hope in competing directly with Apple in this market.

It could, however, mean bad news for Amazon’s Kindle Fire, which is selling incredibly well but also getting a lot of criticism for its proprietary user interface and the ability to only download apps that Amazon has hand-picked as accpetable.