Just last week, we saw the launch of the elusive book cover for the Nexus 10 – the only official accessory of its kind to come out of the Play Store for the 10" slab. Since we spied it at the Nexus 10's original launch, all had been quiet. Presumably, the covers simply weren't ready to be sold.

Naturally, I had to pick one up and give it a shot. After all, I have something of a penchant for official accessories, and promised to give it a quick look. When the cover did show up, however, I noticed something curious. Corroborating a tip from reader Pan, there was a label on the back of the book cover's retail packing indicating a manufacture date of December 17, 2012. Pan indicated a date of November 26th.

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Indeed, we can be sure these covers existed as far back as at least November, as a couple of small blogs around the internet started giving them away as early as December, and Mashable had one for their Nexus 10 review back in November.

Why then, given the heat Google has taken for releasing Nexus accessories a little on the late side, were these covers not brought to market sooner?

One logical conclusion would be that Google was focusing more on the issues that strained supply for the Nexus 10 which, while not as taxing as the roller coaster ride the Nexus 4 experienced, made for spotty availability. Adding the logistics of recording and shipping orders for the book covers may have just fallen off the list of things to do. That said, availability pretty much evened out a few months ago. Even if we could consider the supply issue a logical conclusion, we are talking about Google, not a local bodega.

Many users have expressed that they may have been more inclined to purchase the cover had it been available sooner (ideally at the Nexus 10's initial launch), and it looks like – whatever the reason – Google may have sat on the book covers a little too long.

Thanks, Pan!