You might have heard that Amazon disabled the option for software encryption in the latest version of its Android-based Fire OS for the Kindle Fire series of tablets. (This isn't new - Fire OS 5 has been rolling out to various tablets since last year.) And if you read news that isn't Android Police, you probably also know that it's not the biggest story involving encryption right now. After consumer backlash following the Apple-FBI encryption case, Engadget reports that Amazon says it will return software encryption in the next major update.
Customers might have had something to say about the loss of encryption capabilities even without the highly public spat between Apple and the FBI over the San Bernardino iPhone case. Read More
We interrupt your morning (it's morning here in Seattle at least) to bring you an important public service announcement. If you live in the UK or Ireland and own one of Amazon's affordable 7in tablets, then you need to request a new charger. Amazon has noted that a small quantity of the chargers bundled with these devices have had their housing detach when being removed from the wall, creating a risk of electric shock (no, they are not a fire hazard).
The recall applies to all Fire 7 and Fire 7 Kid's Edition tablets sold in the UK and Ireland since September 2015. Read More
Amazon is slashing the price on its top-of-the-line Kindle Fire tablet right before Christmas, coincidentally on the last day you can order one with two-day shipping before the big day. All of the various Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 models are 30% off today. There are technically twelve different buying options for the HDX: 32GB or 64GB, Wi-Fi or GSM LTE or Verizon LTE, and with or without advertising on the screensaver. The cheapest model, 32GB Wi-Fi with Special Offers, is $299 ($130 off).
Here's a quick breakdown of the retail and sale prices of the various configurations of the HDX being offered today:
- 32GB Wi-Fi, with Special Offers - retail price $429, sale price $299
- 32GB Wi-Fi, without Special Offers - retail price $444, sale price $309
- 64GB Wi-Fi, with Special Offers - retail price $479, sale price $334
- 64GB Wi-Fi, without Special Offers - retail price $494, sale price $344
- 32GB GSM-LTE, with Special Offers - retail price $529, sale price $369
- 32GB GSM-LTE, without Special Offers - retail price $544, sale price $379
- 32GB Verizon-LTE, with Special Offers - retail price $529, sale price $369
- 32GB Verizon-LTE, without Special Offers - retail price $544, sale price $379
- 64GB GSM-LTE, with Special Offers - retail price $579, sale price $404
- 64GB GSM-LTE, without Special Offers - retail price $594, sale price $414
- 64GB Verizon-LTE, with Special Offers - retail price $579, sale price $404
- 64GB Verizon-LTE, without Special Offers - retail price $594, sale price $414
As with all of Amazon's Gold Box Deals, these prices are good for one day only. Read More
Update: Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath has been released on the Play Store, and glory be, it looks like it's not exclusive to anything. You can download it now on any Android 4.0 or higher device, and the Play Store version has the same external controller support and $5.99 price tag. Thanks to commenters step_jac and Amarus Kh for letting us know.
Update again: It looks like Stranger's Wrath is compatible with Android TV as well. Nice.
The Oddworld series is one of the hidden gems of gaming: it's never been a blockbuster in terms of sales, but each game is utterly unique and brings innovative elements across setting, story, aesthetics, and gameplay. Read More
Until now, Amazon's Kindle and Fire devices have lacked one important feature that sets them far behind their Android counterparts: porn. Wait, that's not true, there's tons of porn on Amazon, you can hardly look on the bookstore without seeing self-published Harlequin-style short stories. But if you want to browse a bunch of sites on the less savory side of the Internet on your Kindle Fire without leaving a trail, you're out of luck.
Until now. The latest update to Amazon's proprietary Silk browser adds a private browsing mode, which won't record any history, cookies, or searches when enabled. It's basically the same thing that's been in Chrome and other browsers for years. Read More
If you've taken enough photos to fill up the storage allotment on both Dropbox and Google Drive, and you happen to be an Amazon Prime subscriber, you might want to check out the somewhat nondescript Cloud Drive app. Starting today, Amazon Prime users get unlimited photo storage via the company's branded cloud storage solution. The default free level of generic storage, for Prime members and everyone else, is still the standard 5GB.
The deal applies no matter what device you happen to be using, so automatic photo uploads from Android and iOS via the Cloud Drive app are free, and so are any photos you manually upload to the service's web application via Windows, OS X, ChromeOS, et cetera. Read More
Today Amazon popped its yearly Kindle Fire update unannounced, showing off no less than four new models of its customized Android tablet family. The Kindle Fire HD Kids is being covered in this post, but the main event is the refreshed versions of the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9, Fire HD7, and the "all-new" Fire HD 6. These will make up Amazon's new line, scheduled to go on sale in October.
The HD 6 and HD 7 are the new low and mid-range models, though they're basically identical in terms of capability. Amazon says the screens have "over 1 million pixels," which means a 1280x800 panel (1.024 million pixels, if anyone's wondering). Read More
Some lucky devices are getting their first official taste of that sweet, sweet CyanogenMod ROM action today with the addition of nightly support for the HTC One Max and the Oppo Find 7. The old Kindle Fire is also getting some love with a new platform variant for improved support going forward.
If you want a mid-sized tablet with a high-resolution screen, LTE connectivity, and you don't mind going with Amazon's ecosystem, but don't want to spend much money, today's Gold Box deal should be particularly compelling. The Kindle Fire HD 8.9 LTE version (the previous high-end Kindle Fire model, from late 2012) is discounted by $80 today, bringing its price down to $219.
There's just one catch: it's a refurbished model. The Gold Box deal includes a one-year warranty, which is the same that you'd find on a new Fire HD 8.9, so there's at least some peace of mind to be had. Read More
Amazon's Appstore now has access to Rockstar's PS2-era open world crime trilogy, Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City, and San Andreas. Unfortunately, it looks like these editions are only for the Kindle Fire tablets and the new Fire TV set-top box. But if you do have any of those Amazon devices, and you buy Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas for $6.99, you'll get a whopping 2000 Amazon Coins ($20 in Amazon Appstore credit) for free. You might call it a steal.
San Andreas is the biggest and most expansive of the trilogy, though there are those that prefer GTA III or Vice City. Read More