Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD is a prime example of solid hardware being weighed down by bulky software, but there appears to be a resolution in the works. The CyanogenMod community has just released a new set of nightly builds for the 2012 Kindle Fire HD (7 and 8.9-inch models). Currently pushing experimental status, improved stable builds are expected to land soon.
Amazon has never been a company to provide specific sales numbers, but their just-issued press release shows us that Android, Kindle and Chromebooks dominated their holiday shopping season. Surprisingly, or perhaps not surprising at all is the Chromecast, which is the best seller in the Computers and Accessories category outselling the company’s own Kindle Fire lineup as well as Apple TV and the Roku 3 Streaming Media player.
Amazon’s recently released new line of Kindle Fire hardware and 3.0 Fire OS software is certainly making inroads thanks in no small part to Mayday. Well, Amazon isn’t wasting any time making improvements as they introduce Fire OS 3.1 this morning which includes Goodreads integration, “Second Screen” technology which lets you “fling movies and tv shows from your tablet to your TV” and enterprise-ready features.
From the latest @evleak we can see the rumored new Kindle Fire third generation above. It would appear that Amazon is unfortunately keeping their big bezels and also their heavy proprietary overlay. From the image you can see updated UI improvements that will likely also hit the current lineup. We’re sadly not expecting to see a Google Play Store App like the recently announced Nook OS updates with hundreds of thousands of apps including Google’s Maps, Plus, YouTube, Gmail and more.
BGR caught the purported angular backside of this generation of Kindle earlier this week and together we can usually conclude that leak frequency increase means launch soon. As for specs, BGR’s source says:
Amazon’s new 7-inch Kindle Fire HD will feature a high-resolution 1,920 x 1,200-pixel display, a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset clocked at more than 2GHz, 2GB of RAM, Wi-Fi, optional cellular data, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and either 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of internal storage.
The updated 8.9-inch model is said to feature nearly identical specs beneath its 2,560 x 1,600-pixel high-definition display, and it also includes an 8-megapixel rear camera.
We’re told both models are lighter and more comfortable to use than the current-generation tablets they will replace.
If you are in Amazon’s ecosystem, this could be exciting news. However we’d take the new smaller-bezel Nexus 7 with an Amazon app sight unseen.
If you are a student (or have access to a .edu email address), Amazon is having a special New Years Day deal on the Kindle HD 8.9. The online retailing giant is offering $50 off the price of an 8.9-inch Kindle Fire that yields a $249 price.
Exclusive Discount on Kindle Fire 8.9″
Special pricing available only to Amazon Student Members with an active Prime account (free six-month or $39/year plan). Join Amazon Student or start your [$39/year] discounted Prime membership to take advantage of this sale. The promo codes below will become available 24 hours after activation of your account, through January 30. New members, don’t forget to check your .edu email and verify your account.
How to Redeem This Deal
Place a Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ or a Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE Wireless in your cart. At checkout, enter the promo code KNDL4STU. If you are an Amazon Student member in a free or paid Prime plan, the discount will be applied to the items in your cart. This promo code may be redeemed once per customer. offer good only while supplies last. Read more