Nexus 10 tablet back in stock at US Google Play store

Once again available to be the Nexus of your universe
Once again available to be the Nexus of your universe

The Nexus 10 tablet is once again for sale on the U.S. Google Play store website, marking the first time the popular device has been in stock since the holidays.

This Samsung-manufactured 10-inch tablet now displays a much more pleasant "Shipping Soon" status on its official page, replacing the previous "Sold Out" text in an unfriendly red font.

Google promises to ship both the $399 16GB and $499 32GB models of the Nexus 10 to U.S. consumers "in less than one week."

Nexus 10 inventory has been stretched since its Nov. 13 release date, and remained sold out for many anxious holiday shoppers.

Specs are central to Nexus' popularity

The Nexus 10 has proven to be popular with consumers in part because of rave reviews and its powerful tech specs.

Most noticeably, its screen rivals the "Retina display" of an iPad 4 thanks to a 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution. That's currently the world's highest resolution for a tablet.

And yet, when it comes down to the price, the Nexus 4 vs. iPad 4 debate has Google's tablet winning with a $399 (compared to $499) starting price.

To make the deal even sweeter, Google threw in a Jelly Bean - as in the latest version of its mobile OS, Android 4.2.

Everyone wants to connect with a Nexus

Nexus 10 hasn't been the only Nexus-branded device in high demand on the Google Play store.

The Nexus 4 smartphone and budget-friendly Nexus 7 tablet were also sold out throughout the holiday season.

In fact, the Nexus 4 is still out of stock. It was snapped up by U.S. consumers when it first launched on Nov. 13, and Google has rarely resumed regular shipments.

Nexus 4 hopefuls may have to rely on T-Mobile to find the elusive smartphone later this month, according to the latest reports.

Both the Nexus 10 and Nexus 4 faced setbacks right out of the gate. Hurricane Sandy forced Google to cancel the New York City press conference intended to announce the devices.

Hopefully Google's announcement and inventory luck changes by the time it brings the Nexus development completely in-house with a still-far-off Motorola-made Nexus device.

Matt Swider