Google unveils new Nexus 7 tablet to expand hardware role

SAN FRANCISCO, July 24 Wed Jul 24, 2013 12:46pm EDT

SAN FRANCISCO, July 24 (Reuters) - Google Inc on Wednesday showcased a new Nexus 7, a slimmer version of its year-old tablet that the Internet search company hopes will expand its presence in consumer hardware and ensure its online services remain front-and-center on mobile devices.

The news comes a week before its Motorola division is expected to unveil the "Moto X" smartphone in New York. The Moto X represents the first phone Motorola has developed since it was acquired by Google for $12.5 billion in May 2012, and is central to relaunching the venerable brand into a hotly competitive mobile market.