It's no secret that Amazon is trying to turn the Kindle Fire/HD into the device that the entire family shares for content consumption, but now they've built a service that makes it even more relevant as such. Dubbed FreeTime Unlimited, the all-you-can-eat plan is serving up hot bowls of children's content, ready to be consumed day or night.
Among the unlimited content, you'll find books, games, educational software, movies, and TV shows - all just for kids. FreeTime Unlimited lets children dig through everything that's available to them, picking and choosing what to do next. The cool thing here, though, is that they've also disabled all in-app payments, ads, and all social media links/references within the FreeTime content - so parents can rest assured that their kiddos are safe inside of the virtualized world.
According to Amazon, the original (2011) model of the Kindle Fire (KF) captured 22% of the tablet market. Whether or not you believe that figure, it was almost certainly the most popular Android tablet of the year. When compared to the often-times much more expensive tablets on the market, it was easy to see why: the Kindle fire offered 90% of the experience for 50% (or less) of the price.
But that was before the competition hit back. Samsung released the comparable (but more capable) Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 in April, and even with a keyboard and USB adapter, it cost just $250.
On September 6, Amazon announced three new Kindles: a 6" non-Android model called the Paperwhite (with or without 3G), the 7" Kindle Fire HD (16 and 32GB), and an 8.9" Kindle Fire HD (16 or 32GB), while updating the hardware and dropping the price of the original Fire to $160. Pre-orders for the new versions went live the same day, and release dates vary anywhere from September 14 to November 20. The specs show Amazon's commitment to the ecosystem - and to not be undersold by Google:
Dual-core 1.5GHz OMAP 4470 processor on the 8.9" version; dual-core 1.2GHz OMAP 4460 on the 7"
So, you were thinking about picking up a Kindle Fire HD, rooting it, and throwing a ROM on it for an impressive $200 tablet? Turns out that idea may not work out as well as we initially thought: both the Kindle Fire HD and the second gen KF have locked bootloaders. Bummer.
This may not mean that custom ROMs are impossible on these devices, only that it's more improbable.
For those who may not know, the bootloader is responsible for checking the firmware's signature before a device boots. In this case, if it doesn't match what Amazon says it should, then it simply won't do anything.
When the new Kindle Fire and HD models were announced three days ago, the tech world was abuzz with the fact that Amazon has laced them with "Special Offers" in order to keep the cost down. Immediately, one question came to everyone's mind: will I be able to remove the ads?
Initially, there was some confusion on the answer to that questions. We actually heard reports from both sides of the fence - some said "yes, the ads will be removable," while others stated that they were there to stay.
The subject quickly became a bit of a hot topic, so Ars Technica decided to reach out to Amazon for a definitive answer: will users be able to opt-out of Special Offers?
If you couldn't make your way out to Santa Monica today to watch Jeff Bezos and company take the wraps off the new line of Kindles (and live blogs just aren't good enough), you can now watch the entire event on YouTube.
Hit play above and you'll get about one hour and 12 minutes of pure, unadulterated Kindle-y goodness. We're talking the Kindle Paperweight Paperwhite, rehashed Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HDs, and all other Kindle typing things you can handle.
So grab some snacks and drinks, kick back, and enjoy the show. It's definitely one worth watching.
Today has undoubtedly been a momentous one for Amazon. We've seen the introduction of a new family of Kindle products including the new Kindle Fire and a pair of Kindle Fire HD tablets.
Following today's announcements, Amazon decided to take some time to introduce a few awesome new features those who buy from the Kindle line can expect to enjoy from their new Amazon-branded tablets. In this post, we'll take a brief look at the bevy of new features, starting with X-Ray for Movies.
X-Ray for Movies
X-Ray for Movies, powered by IMDB is a feature that's being introduced exclusively with the Amazon Kindle family, and looks to "revolutionize the movie experience" by providing an answer the question "Who's that guy?" in a single tap while watching a movie.
Amazon, in a press release posted this morning, announced that its "#1 best-selling product," the Kindle Fire, is now sold out. The release boasts the Fire's millions of sales, noting that it managed to eat up an impressive 22% of tablet sales in the US, and added to the overall success of Amazon's digital product sales.
What makes this announcement interesting is that Amazon has a press conference scheduled for September 6th, meaning we're likely to see the latest member of the Kindle family unveiled very soon. Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon, didn't comment directly on this possibility, but he did note "Kindle Fire is sold out, but we have an exciting roadmap ahead – we will continue to offer our customers the best hardware, the best prices, the best customer service, the best cross-platform interoperability, and the best content ecosystem."
The possibility of seeing a new Kindle device this September isn't so surprising considering this is around the same time we saw the original Kindle Fire announced, but it's always exciting to see a new product – particularly in such a successful line – make its debut.