Amazon Kindle Fire; a Nice Entry Level Tablet For The Marketplace.

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Just found out about the Kindle Fire from a video on Cnet talking about the fact that the BlackBerry PlayBook dropped in price by $200 in order to compete with this device.  Well, the last time I saw the BlackBerry PlayBook it was already dropped by $100 at Walmart.  A simple search on Google Shopping shows some companies selling the 16GB for as low as $300.

The bottom line is that the PlayBook is a great piece of hardware, but it is not an Android device and it is not Mac iOS.  The average person who is not already a fan of BlackBerry’s smart phones may not know what this device is or what to expect from it.  You might even find this same tablet on sale for $200 next year, and see the Kindle Fire, which is selling for $199, discounted in time for Christmas.  

The Kindle Fire is just one example of how companies that initially developed eReaders because those were all the rage, have either retrofitted those readers or developed cheaper tablets in other to capture a greater share of the market.  Personally, I think the eReader craze is behind us.  The most infamous translation of an eReader into a tablet was the Pandigital Novel in White, but I think that Amazon is going to deliver an experience that is far greater than that.

The Kindle Fire appears to be an attempt by Amazon to articulate their Cloud Drive through dedicated hardware.  In other words, Amazon Cloud Drive is a great service, but you do have to pay for it, and lets be honest, you do not truly need that service when Google Music Beta is still free and available on Android devices.  The Kindle Fire is a way of aggregating Amazon’s best technologies; Amazon Prime, Amazon Cloud Drive, Amazon Whispersync, and Amazon Silk, into a beautiful experience for those frustrated with the free for all melee that is going on with Android at a cost savings for anyone that would have considered webOS, Mac iOS, or Windows 8.  Kindle Fire owners will be able to use Amazon Cloud Drive for free and get a free month of Amazon Prime.  Amazon also has their own app store so you don’t have to go to the Google Android Store for apps, which is a smart move on their part.  

The device runs Android 2.3, comes with 8 GB of storage and runs on 512 MB of RAM, which is more than enough for the average consumer.  The actual speed of the processor is 1GB, and this is a great move by Amazon; first because it allows them to acquire consumers that would have otherwise looked at other products, and second because it will discourage rooting the Nook Color (thus taking money away from Barnes and Noble).  Rooting is how you unlock an  eReader to provide full functionality of the Android system to run apps.  eReaders tend to have trouble running Adobe Flash and struggle with some of the Javascript that is used on web pages, and rooting is one way around those difficulties.  

This device is not an iPad killer, or the final straw in any other tablet.  If anything the only device this tablet may pose a serious threat to, is the Pandigital Novel.  Unless Pandigital truly opens up this device and allows people to use the Google Android Store this device is done, because the apps offered through the app store on that tablet leave much to be desired.  


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