Kindle Fire Stories December 7, 2015

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Amazon, today, launched a brand new version of its 8-inch Android-based Kindle Fire tablet. The Kindle Fire 8 Reader’s Edition comes with some software and service benefits bookworms will love, and ships with an attractive leather case. It’s available to pre-order for $249 from Amazon now

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Kindle Fire Stories November 27, 2015

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Along with all of its usual wide-ranging discounts, Amazon has slashed the prices of its own hardware for Black Friday. Despite the fact that its newest Android-based tablets were already crazily good value for money, you can now pick them up even cheaper. Prices now start as low as $35 for a Kindle Fire tablet, while the special Kids Edition and HD 6 have seen generous discounts too…

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Kindle Fire Stories September 16, 2015

Upcoming 10-inch Amazon Kindle Fire tablet press render leaked

A press render of Amazon’s upcoming 10-inch Kindle Fire tablet has been leaked ahead of its alleged launch. Although we’re light on specs, the renders show the (rather uninspiring) design of the next Kindle Fire. The image comes from well-known and usually reliable leaker, Evan Blass on Twitter.

From the renders, it appears the next Kindle Fire will have a completely flat front and back, with a slightly more angled, metallic frame around the edges. We can just about make out the power/sleep key on the top edge as well as the front and rear camera. Amazon’s branding is expectedly prominent, although the software is a completely different story. If the render is accurate, it looks like Amazon’s new software will be much more in line with standard Android. Or, at the very list, Amazon software disguised as standard Android. Whatever the software is, it’s a far cry from Amazon’s previous efforts.

Previous Kindle Fire tablets have featured a cover flow-like user interface, pushing Amazon apps and content to the forefront, similar to the UI found on the Amazon Fire TV and Stick. If Evan’s leak is anything close to the finished product (which it normally is), it’ll certainly make a refreshing change from a user experience perspective.It almost certainly has something to do with having fewer staff to work on skins after the job cuts recently. Perhaps it’s a lesson learned by Amazon after the catastrophic failure that was the Fire Phone. A shift to a more familiar UI will surely make the product less confusing to regular consumers.

We don’t yet have a release date, price or specs for the 10-inch tablet, but there have been rumors of a $50 6-inch model which is expected to hit the market in time for the holiday season. Both tablets will likely be announced and released at the same time to take advantage of the busy Q4 shipping period.

Kindle Fire Stories February 24, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: LG G2 (unlocked) $210, Kindle Fire tablets 15% off, Bluetooth speaker bundle $25, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

LG G2 w/ 32GB flash storage, factory unlocked for GSM carriers: $210 shipped (Reg. $300)

15% off Amazon Kindle Fire tablets: Fire HD 6 $84, Fire HD 7 $118, Fire HDX 8.9 $322, Fire HD Kids Edition $126

Lumsing 4-port USB wall charger $11, Bluetooth speaker and dual USB car charger $25 Prime shipped

Belkin Secured Wired Keyboard for Samsung Micro-USB Tablets: $10 shipped (Reg. $30)

One-year magazine subs from $5/yr: Architectural Digest, Wired, Dwell, Runner’s World, more

More new gear from today:

Headphones: Klipsch X11 in-ears $100 (Reg. $132+), Sennheiser HD205-II over-ears $25 (Reg. $50)

More deals still alive:

New products & more:

Kindle Fire Stories November 27, 2014

From 9to5Toys.com where we are rounding up all the best Black Friday deals we have two huge headliners on the almost never discounted Nest product line (that Google picked up along with iPod-father Tony Fadell earlier this year):

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The Nest Learning Thermostat (2nd generation) for $199 shipped. That’s $50 below list and the best price we’ve ever seen.

You can find it at Amazon, Best Buy, Lowes and Abt for $199 for a limited time.

  • The Nest Learning Thermostat remembers what temperatures you like, turns itself down when you’re away and can be controlled from your smartphone, tablet or laptop
  • Auto-Schedule creates a personalized schedule for your home by remembering when you adjust the temperature
  • Auto-Away automatically turns Nest thermostat down when there’s nobody home so you don’t waste energy heating or cooling an empty house
  • Remote control Nest thermostat over Wi-Fi from your smartphone, tablet or laptop
  • Energy History shows you how much energy you’ve used and what affects your energy use most

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The Dropcam Wireless HD Video Monitoring Camera can be found for $99.99 with free shipping. That’s $50 below list and the lowest price we have ever seen on this cloud-based camera/recording system.

Available for $$99 ($50 off) at Amazon and Best Buy.

With a 107° degree field of view and 4x zoom, Dropcam keeps you connected with people, places and pets in sharp 720p HD video.

  • 60 Second Setup – Use your computer to find your Wi-Fi network, live stream in under a minute.
  • High Quality Video – Get into the details with 720p high-definition video.
  • Fast and easy setup – online and securely streaming 720p HD video in 60 seconds.
  • Field of View – 107 degrees diagonal, plus Night Vision and Zoom, means you don’t miss a thing.
  • Cloud Video Recording (CVR) – Review footage and make clips with optional secure offsite recording.
  • Stay connected with Two-Way Talk, Intelligent Alerts, Scheduling and Mobile & Web apps.

Head over to 9to5Toys for the Best Black Friday deals on the web. A little more background on Nest: expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories November 26, 2014

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It seems that Amazon is finally throwing in the towel with its Fire Phone. After the hype leading up to its launch, Fire Phone has been struggling to stay afloat. It’s best to think of the Fire Phone as a smaller version of a Kindle Fire tablet, but with a few extra gimmicks and features thrown in along with a free year of Amazon Prime.

The Fire Phone may have been a disappointment to the market, but Amazon isn’t giving up on its attempt to push it into the hands of consumers this holiday season. The Fire Phone can now be purchased unlocked and off-contract for only $199 (32GB Version)

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Kindle Fire Stories November 12, 2014

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The latest monthly build of CyanogenMod 11 is now available to download for several Android devices, ranging from the HTC One (M8) and HTC Evo 4G LTE to the Samsung Galaxy S4 and Samsung Galaxy Note 3. CyanogenMod 11 M12 download links should be added for other smartphones and tablets over the coming days. expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories September 8, 2014

firephone

Is the Amazon Fire Phone simmering out? Recent estimates reached by The Guardian pegged the device at having sold less than 35,000 units and today Amazon and AT&T are bringing down the price to 99¢ on a two year contract less than two months after launch. The device was previously priced at $199 for 32GB with a two year commitment, which many observed was a rather high price point for a not-so-remarkable handset mostly differentiated by its 3D effect and Amazon Prime services… expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories August 6, 2014

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Microsoft announced today that its cloud-based OneDrive storage application is now available for the Kindle Fire and Fire Phone via the Amazon Appstore. Similar to Google Drive, Microsoft’s online storage solution lets users share photos, videos, documents and other items with other people directly from their smartphone or tablet.

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Kindle Fire Stories July 17, 2014

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Amazon is currently testing an all you can eat subscription-based ebook and audio book service called “Kindle Unlimited.” A product landing page spotted by GigaOM revealed that the unannounced service will provide customers with access to over 600,000 titles for $10 a month. While subscription-based e-book services for smartphones and tablets already exist, Amazon has a vast number of resources that could quickly make the company a force in this relatively untapped market.

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Kindle Fire Stories April 9, 2014

Amazon recently surprised us with its Fire TV set-top box, offering a native solution for customers to stream movies, music, and even play games. Fire TV will only set you back $99, and in my opinion, it’s just what Amazon needed. Instead of relying on third-party streaming solutions, Amazon now has the power to take its media services in a new direction. Take a look at our overview video above to see Fire TV in action.

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Kindle Fire Stories February 21, 2014

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Image: digitaltrends.com

Amazon’s TV box, which the company is believed to have been working on for around a year, is to be launched next month, according to unnamed content distribution sources cited by re/code. It had originally been expected to be launched in time for last year’s holiday sales.

People I’ve talked to who are partnering with Amazon believe the company is aiming for a March rollout […]

Sources tell me Amazon’s box will be powered by Google’s Android operating system, which is also not a surprise — Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets use a “forked” version of Android …  expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories December 26, 2013

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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.

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Kindle Fire Stories December 17, 2013

Amazon smartphone will launch in early 2014 according to supply chain sources

Amazon’s upcoming smartphone that may or may not truly exist is now set to launch in the first half of 2014 according to Digitimes. The world’s most prolific source of insider information with a track record that hits around 50/50 says Primax Electronics has “obtained orders from Amazon for compact camera modules for use in smartphones to be launched in first-half 2014.”

Kindle Fire Stories December 15, 2013

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Amazon is pulling out all the stops to get a Kindle Fire HDX into your hands this holiday season with a brand new payment plan. Amazon unveiled the new plan (as discovered by PC Mag) in the past 24 hours that will allow customers to split the payments across a total of 270 days from the initial date of purchase.

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Kindle Fire Stories December 9, 2013

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Kindle’s Fire tablet lineup is already among the best tablet options geared toward kids and Amazon is boosting that message with some new offerings. The newest update adds more educational and goal-oriented options to make sure kids are getting their work complete before moving to play time.

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Kindle Fire Stories December 4, 2013

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Far be it from me to pass judgement on which Android tablet is the true “gamers” tablet, but a new survey via AllThingsD suggests the Kindle Fire is the people’s choice for gaming. According to a survey conducted this past June by IDC and App Annie, Amazon’s Kindle tablets received around 12% of the votes, far more than all other Android tablets combined. 

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Kindle Fire Stories December 2, 2013

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Note: Strangely, Best Buy still offers the best deal on the Kindle Fire 7 HD with it starting at $99.99

Hello Amazon and two very good, no “unprecedented” deals on two of the internet most popular Kindle Fire tablets. Announced late last night, Amazon is taking $50 off the Kindle Fire HDX 7″, down from to $179 and the Kindle Fire HD 16GB now $119. The full deal is listed below along with links to where you should be whipping out your credit cards. If you’re in the Amazon ecosystem like myself, these are some pretty good deals and while its possible Amazon will discount again before Christmas day, why wait?

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Kindle Fire Stories November 26, 2013

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I’m sure we’re all “tired” to hear about the tablet/PC debate and which format will outsell one another next year. That being said, a new Canalys report caught my eye as it projects that in 2014 tablets will account for 50 percent of the PC market. I consider projections that indicate tablets will become half of the desktop, notebook, and tablet devices that make up the entire PC market to be notable because of the sheer size.

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Kindle Fire Stories November 18, 2013

kindlefireos

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.

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Kindle Fire Stories October 18, 2013

Kindle-HDX

Everything about the new Kindle HDX is better than the previous HD version. The screen is brighter and has more pixels. It is lighter, thinner, has a better case, and has an improved OS. The buttons are now around the back vs. on either side (which takes a few reps to get used to). You can now jump down to the apps in much similar way to what you can in a normal Android tablet.

But that’s the problem. The OS just isn’t as good as the one you’ll find on the Nexus 7 with similar specs. And with the Nexus 7 you’ll get Google’s extremely productive Google Apps including Google Now, Google Maps, Gmail, Translate, and on and on. With the Kindle line you get a lot of nice apps, including many of the more popular ones like Facebook, Hulu, Netflix.  But you don’t get any of the long tail apps you get from the Google Play Store, and that’s kind of a bummer.

Also, I’m personally not feeling the Mayday feature. It was probably awesome when there were only 20 reviewers getting service, but I had to wait on hold for around 10 minutes before I could talk to someone – for me, that’s not worth it. Your mileage will vary, obviously.

Amazon has a ton of good content including a very passable App selection, full music and movie libraries, and of course tons of ebooks.  If you are okay with just Amazon, then you are looking at the best tablet you can find.  If you want more, then head over to Google Play. Pricing options below. 

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Kindle Fire Stories October 15, 2013

Amazon has long been said to be working on a smartphone carrying its brand, and it looks like it HTC could be its hardware partner.

That’s according to a report from the Financial Times, which cites people familiar with the project in saying that three different smartphones are currently in development with one being “at an advanced stage of development.”

“We have been very focused on building our own brand, but we have also been very open to co-branding and collaborating with carriers and other technology brands,” HTC chief of marketing Ben Ho told the Financial Times, but declined to comment on any specific relationship with Amazon.

Shipping a phone with both the HTC and Amazon logos would mean more than just branding for the phone, as Amazon would be able to take over much of the Android operating system experience as it has done with the Kindle Fire tablets. HTC partnered with Facebook earlier this year for the not-so-popular-now HTC First featuring Facebook Home, but borrowing software features from the Kindle Fire like Mayday, an Amazon support service for users, could prove valuable to both HTC and Amazon and be very appealing to new users in a saturated smartphone market. expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories September 15, 2013

Kindle-fire-gen-3

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-amazon-kindle-fire-2-5

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.

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Kindle Fire Stories August 27, 2013

Amazon launches new API to let Android devs sell Amazon.com products as in-app purchases

Amazon announced today that it’s introducing a new “Mobile Associates API” for Android and Kindle Fire devices allowing developers to offer Amazon.com goods as in-app purchases and earn a percentage of sales in the process. Developers will earn up to 6% off purchases made through their apps and all sales will go through Amazon’s secure 1-Click purchasing and Amazon Prime shipping.

Amazon described a few of the possibilities for developers:

Until today, if developers wanted to create additional revenue channels for their apps they could use a “freemium” model with digital in-app purchasing or subscriptions, or by using mobile ads… App and game developers as well as existing Amazon Associates can create new and compelling user experiences within apps and games in three ways: selling a single item from within an app or game, showcasing a category of goods, or bundling the purchase of physical goods with the purchase of digital goods (for example, the customer receives a digital version of a board game when they buy the physical one). Animoca, Fismos, Days of Wonder and Spring2Partners are already integrating these experiences within their popular apps and games.

You can learn more about the new API on the Amazon developers blog.

Kindle Fire Stories July 9, 2013

Flash video comes to (some) Kindle Fire tablets as Amazon tests streaming viewer

AllThingsD reports that Amazon has been quietly testing a way to offer Flash video on Kindle Fire tablets.

Since February, some Kindle Fire owners have been seeing an option to use an “experimental streaming viewer” when trying to watch video on sites such as NBC.com, CBS.com and Fox.com.

The effort is made possible by the fact that the Kindle Fire browser, known as Silk, divides work between the device and Amazon servers in the cloud.

Adobe stopped supporting Flash on mobile devices back in 2011, with Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0)  the last version to offer Flash. While most sites have now switched to HTML5 for mobile video, there are still some that require Flash, causing frustration for those accessing the sites on smartphones and tablets.

Although getting a server to convert Flash video to a format that can be viewed by a device without Flash is an approach used by a number of browsers, it has so far mostly been the preserve of geeks. If Amazon opens the service to all Kindle users – as seems likely from the company’s comments – it will turn it into a mainstream option.

“Because this feature is built on the AWS cloud, expanding our list of available sites is as simple as a configuration change that immediately propagates to customer devices and we can scale out elastically based upon customer demand,” said Kufeld, who heads Amazon’s Silk browser team. “It’s still early days but we’re very excited about this feature.”

Kindle Fire Stories May 13, 2013

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Following their announcement of the new “Coins” virtual currency, Amazon has given all Kindle Fire owners 500 coins for free, a $5 value.  Coins can be used by Kindle Fire owners to purchase apps, in-app purchases, and other content from the Amazon Appstore.  This generous offer by Amazon will result in them giving away “tens of millions of dollars’ worth of Amazon Coins” to Kindle Fire owners.  The 500 free Amazon Coins should already be in your account if you are eligible for the giveaway.

This promotion comes just hours after Amazon’s Kindle Fire Mother’s Day sale has ended.

Full letter from Amazon C.E.O Jeff Bezos below: expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories May 9, 2013

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According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon is working to expand its hardware offerings, this year, beyond the Kindle e-readers and tablets (like the Kindle Fire). According to the new report, Amazon is working on two smartphones, including a high-end model with a 3D display. Like other smartphones currently on the market, this display could be interacted with via a user’s eyes:

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Kindle Fire Stories February 5, 2013

Amazon announces ‘Coins’ virtual currency for Appstore purchases on Kindle Fire

Amazon today announced that it will soon roll out a new virtual currency, known simply as “Coins,” that Kindle Fire owners can use to purchase apps, in-app purchases, and other content from the Amazon Appstore. Amazon said the service will launch for users in the United States in May and noted developers will still take their usual 70-percent revenue for purchases made with Coins. For the launch of Coins, Amazon will give away “tens of millions of dollars’ worth of Amazon Coins” to Kindle Fire users. This is definitely good news for developers who submit their apps by the April 25 deadline.

Amazon Coins is an easy way for Kindle Fire customers to spend money on developers’ apps in the Amazon Appstore, offering app and game developers another substantial opportunity to drive traffic, downloads and increase monetization even further.. Amazon will give customers tens of millions of dollars’ worth of Amazon Coins to use on developers’ apps in the Amazon Appstore—apps and games must be submitted and approved by April 25 to be ready when Amazon Coins arrive in customers’ accounts

Kindle Fire Stories January 1, 2013

From 9to5Toys.com:

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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. expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories December 17, 2012

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Rumors have been in the air for several months that claim Amazon will compete in the handset space with its own offering, much like it did with its Kindle Fire line of tablets. According to a new report from the Taiwan Economic News, the Internet retail giant has selected the infamous Foxconn to manufacture the handset. Additionally, Amazon is said to have ordered 5 million units and will launch the device at $100 to $200 sometime in the second quarter or third quarter of 2013.

The Kindle Fire line of tablets, which has software based off Android with many custom additions (and even more subtractions), has done wonders for Android’s tablet marketshare, helping the platform close the seemingly insurmountable gap with the iPad. Amazon was the first to offer a tablet at such a low cost, selling in seemingly big numbers. However, no specific figures have ever been given. With its large online marketplace and bevy of apps on its Amazon Appstore, we wouldn’t put it past the company to be a serious competitor in the handset game. (via Engadget)

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Kindle Fire Stories December 11, 2012

I (and, to be honest, more my kids) have used the Kindle Fire HD for over a month, and I thought I’d share some thoughts from an iPad/Android user’s perspective.

The hardware is excellent and a significant upgrade from the original Fire. It feels extremely solid and the 1,280-by-720 HD display looks great. The speakers are better than either the iPad Mini or the Nexus 7 and not barely — by a long shot. I wouldn’t go so far as to say they are “stereo speakers” (it is a 7-inch device obviously and there is little separation), but they are both louder and clearer than the competition. The HD is also noticeably thinner than the original Kindle Fire, but that comes at the expense of bigger bezels that give it a bigger footprint than the same-screened Nexus 7 and similar size to the bigger-screened iPad Mini. This is unfortunate because one of the nicest things about the size of a 7-inch tablet is either it can squeeze into a back pocket or, more likely, a coat pocket…and those inches count. Neither the iPad Mini nor the Kindle HD fit in my jacket pocket as well as the much more slender Nexus 7.

But, that’s not the biggest problem…

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Kindle Fire Stories December 3, 2012

Nexus 7 Ships

The Digital Reader recently discovered benchmarks posted to the GLBenchmarks website for an unannounced Asus tablet that might be for Google’s much rumored $99 Nexus tablet. According to the specs listed in the benchmark data, the Asus ME172V will sport a 1,024-by-600-resolution display, Android 4.1.1, a 400MHz Mali GPU, and a 1GHz CPU. There’s a possibility this is just a low-cost Asus tablet, and not a Nexus. With the $159 Kindle Fire sporting a display with the same resolution, a $99 price point might be a bit of a stretch for this upcoming Asus tab—whether it’s a Nexus or not.

In recent months Digitimes, a publication with a spotty track record for predicting product launches, has reported several times that suppliers have confirmed a low-cost, $99 Nexus tablet is in the works. In October, NPD DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim also claimed that Google is working on a $99 tablet, adding that it could go into production as soon as December.

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Kindle Fire Stories November 26, 2012

Kindle Fire set record sales for Amazon on Black Friday

After reducing prices for the big shopping event known as “Black Friday,” Amazon said this morning that its Kindle Fire saw a record amount of sales of up to three times the previous record set. Amazon offered the base Kindle Fire at only £99, creating for an “incredible reaction” on Amazon.co.uk. The United States store surely saw similar numbers.

“In response to strong customer demand we included Kindle Fire in Black Friday deals week, dropping the price to just £99, and the reaction has been incredible. Customers purchased more than three times as many Kindle devices on Black Friday than on any other day in its history on Amazon.co.uk, and our previous record was impressive,” said Jorrit Van der Meulen, Vice President, Kindle EU.  “This fantastic Kindle Fire offer runs until midnight, Monday 26th November, so customers still have time to snap up a Kindle Fire in time for Christmas.”

The full press release is below:

Kindle Fire Stories November 15, 2012

Adobe just announced on its Photoshop blog that it is making the Photoshop Touch app available to Kindle Fire devices starting today for $9.99 in the Amazon Appstore. Adobe previously had version of the app available for other Android devices on Google Play, as well as an iOS version of the scaled down Photoshop app for Apple’s devices. The new app for Kindle Fire will be available on the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD, and the 7-inch Kindle Fire, and Kindle Fire HD models. The app is only compatible with devices running Android 4.0 and up, so it’s not available to first-gen Kindle Fire users.

We have worked closely with Amazon to enable Adobe Photoshop Touch on this device, and are proud to announce that it is available for purchase in the Amazon Appstore immediately for US$9.99… In addition, we are announcing support for the updated 7-inch Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD devices. This means that Photoshop Touch is optimized for both 8.9-inch and 7-inch screens, giving users a great experience on all recent Kindle Fire devices.

Kindle Fire Stories October 5, 2012

Amazon Appstore for Android offers free copy of Alphabet Car app

The Alphabet Car app is free today on the Amazon Appstore for Android as one of the online retailer’s Daily Deal specials. The word game normally goes for $2.99, and it has a 4-star rating or higher on both Amazon and Google Play. Folks can even receive a complimentary $1 Amazon MP3 Credit with this download. One claim per Amazon account, however, until Dec. 31.

Check it out: Amazon | Alphabet Car by Animoca

Kindle Fire Stories October 2, 2012

Pew: Android soars to 48 percent of US adult tablet ownership in 2012, pushes Apple down to 52 percent

A new survey by research organization Pew Internet & American Life Project depicts how Android rose from 15 percent in 2011 to 48 percent in 2012, in terms of U.S. adult tablet ownership, due to the higher-priced iPads steadily losing traction.

Pew’s Journalism website elaborated:

Over the last year, tablet ownership has steadily increased from 11% of U.S. adults in July of 2011 to 18% in January of 2012, according to PEJ data. Currently, 22% own a tablet and another 3% regularly use a tablet owned by someone else in the home. This number is very close to new data, released here for the first time, conducted in a separate survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project on July 16 through August 7 2012 that found 25% of all U.S. adults have a tablet computer.

The growth in tablet adoption is likely related to the advent of the lower-priced tablets in late 2011. Overall, about two-thirds of tablet-owning adults, 68%, got their tablet in the last year, including 32% in 2012 alone. That has lessened Apple’s dominance in the market. Now, just over half, 52%, of tablet owners report owning an iPad, compared with 81% in the survey a year ago.

Android-based devices are now at 48 percent overall: approximately 21 percent own the Android-forked Kindle Fire, 8 percent own the Samsung Galaxy, and the remaining is a mix. It is worth noting Android would only hold 27 percent without the $199 Kindle Fire.

The survey did not include Google’s Nexus 7 or Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD, however, as they were not yet introduced. The final numbers also mirror world sales data, according to Pew, which place the iPad at 61 percent and Android at 31 percent.

Check out Pew for more related information on smartphone ownership and operating system loyalty.

Kindle Fire Stories September 20, 2012

Walmart apparently sent a memo to store managers on Sept. 19. announcing plans to stop selling Amazon’s line of Kindle products.

“We have recently made the business decision to not carry Amazon tablets and eReaders beyond our existing inventory and purchase commitments,” said Walmart in the memo. “This includes all Amazon Kindle models current and recently announced.”

Reuters, which cited the memo and an unidentified source “familiar with situation,” first reported the news:

In the memo, Wal-Mart said the decision was consistent with its overall merchandising strategy. While Wal-Mart dwarfs other retailers in overall sales, it trails Amazon and others online and has been stepping up efforts to increase its presence there. Consumers who buy Kindle tablets such as the new Kindle Fire HD can shop on the devices for more than just digital books, pushing Amazon into further competition with stores.

The publication did not provide additional details, but Walmart.com currently reflects the reported change. When searching for “Kindle” on the national retailer’s website, no Kindle-related products appear in the queue. It is unclear if Walmart’s website ever offered the tablets, however.

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Kindle Fire Stories September 17, 2012

Amazon releases Maps API for new Kindle Fires with interactive maps and custom overlays

Amazon took some time today to discuss the new Amazon Maps API it released alongside the Kindle Fire HD earlier this month. According to a post on the Amazon Mobile App Distribution blog, the new API will make it easy for developers “to integrate mapping functionality into apps that run on the all-new Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD.” The Maps API is now in beta and available through the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal.

If you are curious about exactly what the new API provides, Amazon provided a description of the core features:

  • Interactive Maps. You can embed a Map View in your app for customers to pan, zoom and fling around the world. You have the option to display a user’s current location, switch between standard maps and satellite view, and more.
  • Custom Overlays. You can display the locations of businesses, landmarks and other points of interest with your own customized markers and pins.

The folks at iFixit are performing its usual teardown ritual today. This time it has a full breakdown of Amazon’s new Kindle Fire HD announced earlier this month. One of the teardown highlights: the device includes a 3.7 V, 4400 mAh, 16.43 Wh Li-ion battery that has about the same juice as the previous-generation Kindle Fires, which means the 11 hours of expected battery life is up for debate. Other findings: The Kindle Fire HD sports an upgraded Texas Instruments OMAP 4460 dual-core processor with 1GB of RAM from Elpida, a LCD from LG Display, and 16GB of flash memory from Samsung. Overall, the device scores a decent 7 out of 10 repairability score, which ties with the Nexus 7 and beats the third-generation iPad.

-Samsung KLMAG2GE4A eMMC 16 GB Flash Memory and Flash Memory Controller -Elpida B8164B3PF-1D-F 8 Gb (1 GB) DDR2 RAM -Texas Instruments TWL6032 Fully Integrated Power Management IC -Broadcom BCM2076 GPS, Bluetooth 4.0, and FM Receiver/Transmitter -Wolfson WM8962E Ultra-Low Power Stereo CODEC -B50 5222 12507A9A10

iFixit’s notes on the teardown are below: expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories September 6, 2012

Amazon Kindle Event Liveblog

Update: Here’s the full presentation video:

 

That’s it folks!

3:00: The ‘big kahuna’ is a $499 LTE 32GB version of the 8.9 inch Kindle HD.  That’s exactly where Apple starts.

2:45 Bezos says Amazon wants to make money when people use its products. If someone puts it in a desk drawer, Amazon deserves nothing.

.

A lot of social media ties to games. Cloud streaming etc.

2:30 Devices called the Kindle SD and HD 7 and 8.9 inch respectively.

Parental controls for more multiple children.Kindle FreeTime: You can set different time limits for different kinds of content for your kids. Books? Unlimited. Games and TV? Limited.

“Sometimes you invent for customers. Sometimes you invent for yourself.” Bezos has four kids. He knows about negotiation over screens.

2:20 First time I’ve seen Amazon bring out speeds and feeds.  Touting TI OMAP processor over Tegra 3 (as in Nexus 7) in floating point.  Lots faster. Means wicked fast page turning. MIMO dual antenna radios help get content faster.”41% faster than iPad, even faster than Nexus 7.”

2:15: Kindle Fire: “In less than a year, Kindle Fire is 22 percent of tablet sales in the US.” #1 best selling device on Amazon.com

$159 is the new price of th 7-inch version including longer battery life and more RAM and better performance.

New 8.9″ version 1920×1200

The 8.9-inch Kindle has Dolby Digital Plus – the first tablet to have this. Dual speakers vs. singular speaker on iPad.

“Customers are smart. Last year, there were more than two dozen Android tablets launched into the marketplace, and nobody bought ‘em. Why? Because they’re gadgets, and people don’t want gadgets anymore. They want services that improve over time. They want services that improve every day, every week, and every month.”

2:00 Keeping the $79 Kindle with new Black plastic. Adding more fonts and faster pageturns and knocking off $10: $69

Via Verge

1:45: Kindle Paperwhite: 8week battery life, 7.7ozs/ 9mm thick. Patented backlighting. High Re screen – 212ppi. Don’t call it Retina.

1:42: Lights go down. Commercial from the game last night plays

1:40 So the first 10 minutes are over an nothing to show for it. only 110 more!

1:30 here we go…

1:20 BREAKING:

1) Amazon CEO will be present. 2) there will be demos. 3) amazon has prepared.

1:18: Mobile Nations peeped Amazon Board member and former Apple/Palm/HP hardware design guru Jon “Ruby” Rubinstein. He’s here to “learn”

1:15: 2 hours eh? This is going to be a helluva show.

1:00: I just want to say for the record that a Streaming TV product makes more sense than a Phone for Amazon.  That is all.

Show starts at 1:30PM ET folks.

e

Kindle Fire Stories August 15, 2012

Report: FCC clears Amazon’s next Kindle Fire with larger display, possible fall release

Amazon’s next-generation Kindle Fire could land in the fall with a larger display.

At least that is what Nate Hoffelder of The Digital Reader reported after receiving a tip about a new Kindle Fire clearing the Federal Communications Commission yesterday:

A friend of mine has tipped me to an anonymous set of FCC documents which were posted yesterday. They don’t show any useful detail, but they do lead somewhere interesting. Like Amazon’s past FCC submissions, this paperwork belongs to a new front company. This time around the company is Harpers LLC.

Hoffelder did not find any details in the FCC filing beyond the eReader’s label, but he reviewed the dimensions given and said it looked like a 9.7-inch or 10-inch tablet:

The general screen geometry is likely going to be 4:3 (like the iPad), and not widescreen like many Android tablets. And since some of the hidden parts of the FCC paperwork will be revealed in December, this device will clearly be launched this fall.

The original Kindle Fire is a version of Amazon’s popular Kindle eReader. It announced in September 2011 with a color 7-inch multi-touch display and a forked version of Google’s Android operating system.

Go to The Digital Reader for the full report. 

[FCC— OET Exhibits List]

Kindle Fire Stories July 11, 2012

Amazon just announced a new gaming experience for developers and the Kindle Fire: GameCircle.

According to the Amazon Mobile App Distribution blog, GameCircle is a “new set of services designed to make it easier for you to create more engaging gaming experiences and grow your business on Kindle Fire,” by making “achievements, leaderboards and sync APIs accessible, simple and quick for you to integrate, and will give gamers a more seamless and entertaining in-game experience.”

Amazon offers a growing suite of developer services. Its new GameCircle is geared specifically for game developers too, which is great news for the Kindle Fire since it is facing a firestorm of Android-based content competition from the new Nexus 7. Game Circle also helps players to better experience their games through three key features —achievements, leaderboards, and sync—that will surely continue to entice folks to the dominating Android-based eReader.

Achievements allow players to “track all earned trophies, treasures, badges, awards, and more without leaving the gaming experience,” while leaderboards give an “in-game view of score comparison information and percentile ranking, allowing players to quickly and easily check standings against top players or competitors, without ever leaving your game.”

Sync autosaves players’ in-game progress to the cloud for immediate pick-up exactly where they ended when switching devices or restoring a deleted game. Losing progress, scores or achievements is not a problem with GameCircle, because as all data is safely stored in the cloud.

expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories July 3, 2012

iFixit is hardcore when it comes to breaking open our favorite electronics to see what’s inside, and the website did it again today with the refreshed Google-flagship, Asus-built Nexus 7 that unveiled at the Google I/O conference last week.

Teardown highlights:

— The 7-inch tablet offers GPS, NFC, and Wi-Fi antennas all manufactured between April 20 and May 25, 20011. — The Nexus 7 boasts a 4326 mAh battery that lasts 9:49 hours, whereas the Kindle Fire has a 4400 mAh battery that lasts 7:42 hours. Meanwhile, the new iPad battery, which is “significantly larger” at 11,500 mAh, only lasts 9:52 hours for HSPA and 9:37 hours for LTE. — The official Nexus page stated there is one “speaker” in the back, but iFixit spotted — Hydis manufactures the 7-inch, 1,280-by-800 HD display designated by model HV070WX2.

What’s inside:

— NVIDIA T30L Tegra 3 processor — Hynix HTC2G83CFR DDR3 RAM — Kingston KE44B-26BN/8GB 8GB flash — Max 77612A inverting switching regulator — AzureWave AW-NH665 wireless module — Broadcom BCM4751 integrated monolithic GPS receiver — Invensense MPU-6050 gyro and accelerometer

A gallery is below.

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Kindle Fire Stories June 28, 2012

Google announces Chrome for iPhone & iPad, coming to App Store today

Update: The app is already available in some international App Stores and will hit the U.S. store soon.

Google just announced at Day 2 of Google I/O that Chrome for iPhone & iPad will come to the App Store later today for devices running iOS 4.3 or later. The app will feature many of the features present in other versions of the browser, including: Chrome sync, incognito mode, and its unique tab UI. Google also announced during the keynote that it would bring its recently launched Google Drive cloud service to iOS devices.

As noted by Daring Fireball, the Chrome iOS app will have to rely on WebKit:

Kindle Fire Stories June 26, 2012

The next Kindle Fire is eyeing a July 31 launch date.

CNET just reported that Amazon’s next version of the widely popular Kindle Fire, otherwise dubbed the “Kindle Fire 2” or the second-generation Kindle Fire, would unveil next month. The publication cited “a credible source” but could not confirm the summer date, and it pointed to DigiTimes for specs, which claimed the rumored 7-inch eReader will release with a $199 price tag and 1,2800-by-800 pixel display at the beginning of the third quarter.

According to CNET:

The DigiTimes article cited the usual sources in the “upstream supply chain” and talked about how Amazon would reduce the price of the current Kindle Fire to $149. It also speculated that Amazon’s long-rumored larger tablet is still on hold but that new e-ink Kindles with integrated lighting were expected to be released alongside the Kindle Fire 2 (or whatever Amazon chooses to call it).

Our source didn’t mention the higher resolution display but did say that the new tablet would have a camera and physical volume-control buttons (many users complained that the Kindle Fire only has on-screen volume controls).

expand full story

Kindle Fire Stories June 14, 2012

Amazon just bulked its Kindle app for Android, iOS, and its Cloud Reader by adding children’s books, comics, and graphic novels that were previously exclusive to Kindle Fire owners.

The apps now offer over 1,000 titles for children with features like Text Pop-Up, which help to improve and simplify the reading experience, and Kindle Panel view for comics and graphics to allow panel-by-panel viewing. A few of the literary additions include Brown Bear, Curious George, Batman, and Superman.

Android tablet owners, or those with Cloud Reader on a widescreen display, will also notice the ability to customize their reading experience with new margin and line spacing controls. The update also brings side-by-side viewing of two pages in landscape mode. Meanwhile, iOS users have a new Search option to locate content by title or author.

This article is cross-posted on 9to5Mac.

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Kindle Fire Stories June 6, 2012

Display captures of press shots for the Google Nexus allegedly leaked online today, which show the Asus-manufactured tablet looking like a huge Galaxy Note and Galaxy S III cross.

PhoneArena posted the leaks of the highly anticipated 7-inch tablet. Google is long-rumored to launch the device with the latest version of Android for around $250 to directly compete with Amazon’s Kindle Fire and the Barnes & Noble’s Nook.

The images showcase a white front with three dots in the upper-right corner that closely resemble Samsung’s Galaxy S III. Meanwhile, the back sports a two-tone white and black color scheme. The device also carries a bevy of sensors with indications of a video-capable camera on the front and a second camera on the back. The tipster, who leaked the drafts, mentioned a quad-core Tegra 3 as the CPU with the possibility of 1GB of RAM for additional specs.

It is worth noting that the source denied rumors about the Google Nexus featuring Android 5.0 Jelly Bean for the operating system, and instead claimed an updated version of Ice Cream Sandwich, i.e., Android 4.1, would power the tablet. This information corroborates the RightWare benchmark test from last month that suggested a “Google Asus Nexus 7″ would boast Android 4.1 with a quad-core Tegra 3 processor.

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Kindle Fire Stories May 30, 2012

Google’s much-rumored 7-inch Asus tablet surfaced in a RightWare benchmark test recently and teased those eagerly awaiting a Mountain View, Calif.-branded slate.

The outing revealed a “Google Asus Nexus 7″ that boasts a quad-core Tegra 3 processor, runs Android 4.1, and carries a 768-by-1,280 resolution. The screenshots above and below detail the full specs. 

Mum’s the word for Google and Asus, but recent rumors suggest the 7-inch device will unveil at Google’s I/O Conference next month. It is worth mentioning, however, that past reports also indicated an April and May launch. One thing is for sure, with Asus on board for this project, many believe the Nexus 7 will look similar to other offerings by the Taiwanese manufacturer.

Google’s flagship Android-powered tablet is set to compete with Amazon’s Kindle Fire, Barnes & Noble’s Nook Tablet, and Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 2, so a $200 to $250 price tag is in the radar.

In related news, a Federal Communications Commission filing for the Asus MeMo Pad 370T appeared this morning. This, as one might recall, is the $249 CES device that put the rumor mill into overdrive regarding a potential Google tablet, and now it causing the blogosophere to brim with reports about a 7-inch form factor on the I/O horizon.

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