A few weeks ago, Ryan and I tag teamed the Kindle Fire HD 6 and 7 in a review that left us both pretty dang impressed with what Amazon has cooked up in its newest budget-friendly tablets. Since then, I've been playing with the Fire HD Kids (6" - $149; 7" - $159), Amazon's attempt at entering the kids' tablet market. I'm using the six-inch model for this review, but the tablet is also available in a seven-inch model.
Amazon announced a handful of new Fire tablets tonight, one of which is designed specifically for kids. The company looks to be going after Fuhu's nabi and Samsung's Galaxy Tab 3 Kids with the Fire HD Kids Edition, and it's going straight for the jugular.
First off, the Fire HD Kids Edition (FHDKE?) has an unheard of two year, no questions asked guarantee. If the tablet gets broken any time within the first two years – regardless of how it happens – Amazon will replace it at no charge.
Yesterday, we told you that Amazon's newest Kindles are shipping with locked bootloaders. We mentioned that this probably wouldn't prevent the devices from being rooted, as a method was already in the works. That method has now been confirmed, and root for the Kindle Fire HD is go!
In case you forgot, we thought we'd give you a heads-up that Amazon's new Kindle Fire HD is officially available today - if you want the 7-inch, 16GB version. It's packing a 1.2GHz dual-core TI OMAP4460 processor, a 1280x800 display with advanced anti-glare tech, and a set of stereo speakers that really do blow away any other slate on the market. For a more complete look at the HD 7, check out our hands-on (with a comparison to the Nexus 7), and our original announcement post.
I had a chance to spend some time with Amazon's new Kindle Fires today at the company's event in Los Angeles, so I'm going to share a few thoughts about Amazon's newest Android-based slates. Disclaimer: Yes, I only spent about an hour with this tablet today, but I'm going to give you a sense of where I think the Kindle Fire HD is headed, who it's targeted to, and whether or not you should be interested in buying it.
Earlier today, Amazon announced a slew of new Kindle products: a refreshed 8GB Fire, brand new 16/32GB Fire HD 7" and 16/32GB Fire HD 8.9", including 32/64GB LTE-enabled variants, and a Kindle Paperwhite which doesn't run Android. The pre-order links weren't working right away, but they've just gone live, and I have them all for you right here.
Kindle Fire (2012 Refresh)
8GB - $159 (September 14th release date) - Pre-order link
Kindle Fire HD 7"
16GB - $199 (September 14th release date) - Pre-order link
32GB - $249 (October 25th release date) - Pre-order link
Kindle Fire HD 8.9"
16GB - $299 (November 20th release date) - Pre-order link
32GB - $369 (November 20th release date) - Pre-order link
Kindle Fire HD 8.9" 4G-LTE
32GB - $499 (November 20th release date) - Pre-order link
64GB - $599 (November 20th release date) - Pre-order link
Repeat after me - "paperwhite." Not "paperweight." Amazon didn't think this one through, did it?
Amazon's new 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD is impressive enough in its own right, thanks to high-end features and a competitive price of $299. But at the Kindle press event today, CEO Jeff Bezos announced something truly groundbreaking: a Kindle Fire with a 4G LTE connection and an unprecedented data plan. For $499 (the price of the iPad 3, among many others) you get the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD, a 4G LTE data connection (almost certainly AT&T) and access to a $49.99-a-year data plan.
Amazon is currently unveiling a slew of new products at its press conference today. One of the headlining set of slates is the Kindle Fire HD. They will come in two sizes, 7" and 8.9". The HD tablets will be tied deeply to Amazon's content ecosystem. The 8.9" model will have an astounding 1920x1200 display, and it's bound to be one of the nicest looking displays we've seen in a primarily-content-driven device.