The official announcement of the Kindle Fire eBook reader has been made after months of anticipation by tech fans followed by a lot of speculation in the media. At a press conference event in New York, Amazon’s company president Jeff Bezos stated that this new product is a premium product at a non-premium price. He also manifested confidence in sales reaching several millions. The release of this tablet dates back to the rumor mill early last year.
The small competitive price of this new Kindle eBook reader is expected to lower the current table prices leading to a new market leader within this segment as claimed by IT&C specialists.
The main feature to note is the small price set at $199 meant to be an icebreaker within the entry level segment. The eBook reader is intended to rally previous Kindle tablet users under a colored display.
The new browser Amazon Silk has been approved by IT publications due to fast speed and great browsing experience.
The Kindle Fire design has been inspired by RIM’s Playbook which has been constructed by the same design manufacturer Quanta. The first model of this next generation of Android Kindle is meant to reduce the losses suffered by Amazon on the tablet market segment and as a door opener that will get the company back in the race.
The specs of the Kindle Fire include a 7 inch IPS LCD display with multi-touch features, a Gorilla glass screen at 169dpi and a 16 million colors resolution. The dimensions offered are: 5″ x 4.7″ x 0.45″ (190 mm x 120 mm x 11.4 mm). The tablet weighs 14.6 ounces which classifies it in the light weight category. The price has been determined at $199 being cheaper than the current heavy-weight title holder, Apple’s IPod. In terms of durability the material from which it’s constructed is 30 times tougher than plastic. Although we were expecting more than 10 hours of reading time this Kindle eBook reader offers 8 hours of reading time thanks to a Li-Ion battery. Another disadvantage worth mentioning at the $199 price level is lack of 3G connectivity, making it impossible for users to access Amazon’s store from any location preferred. Wi-Fi will have to be sufficient at this price range. Kindle Fire storing capacity reaches 8GB of space. This is enough to store enough media and reading content freely on Amazon’s cloud servers. The Amazon’s App store application comes to complement the online content available through Android Market.
The Kindle Fire Texas Instruments ARM-based processor is a 1GHZ dual-core and it’s more than sufficient to run Silk. At this price level the eBook reader lacks an incorporated microphone and webcam so people who love to chat will have to purchase from Amazon’s competitors.
The Kindle Fire interface runs a version of Google’s Android OS, no, not Honeycomb 3.0 an earlier version of Android 2.x; it’s structured as follows: your name at the top of the screen next to the search bar with several buttons present for your news stand, music, documents, and books. Under this navigation bar a shelf is present with your reading library.
Amazon Silk cloud accelerated browser works on an EC2 computer cluster with good compression capabilities meant to limit the stress present on the bandwidth by making use of the cloud. Silk is a browser which remembers your browsing patterns and when you open your eBook reader it pre-loads your preferences.
Amazon promises additional apps for the Kindle Fire such as Pandora (available US), Facebook, Twitter, and Netflix (also US available).
The most interesting feature of the Kindle Fire is Whispersync technology. The purpose is that of making your media available on your TV and other devices.
Although aware of its shortcomings, the Kindle Fire eBook reader gets a decent start thanks to the following reasons:
Kindle Fire is set in preorder status, with a release date set for the 15th of November for the USA with no mention of Europe at present.