Gary Busey has carefully crafted a reputation as a lunatic. True, a good part of that might just be his Hollywood persona, but you've got to admit it's entertaining. Someone at Amazon agrees, because they enlisted Mr. Busey's services for one of the first promotions of the new Android-powered FireTV set-top box. In this one-minute spot, Gary Busey talks to a lamp.
Amazon takes the initiative here, using a crazy shouting man to illustrate the fact that the competing Roku set-top boxes don't have voice control.
Amazon has made it easy to access its streaming content on a number of living room devices, but now it's finally making a play for your TV with its own box – the FireTV. This $99 black box contains a quad-core Snapdragon 600 processor (1.7GHz), 2GB of RAM, optical out, MIMO WiFi, and 8GB of storage. It runs a heavily modified version of Android as the base of Amazon's new content delivery platform.
Mega-retailer Amazon has scheduled a press event for Wednesday, April 2nd in New York City. The press invitation teases the event with the phrase, "Please join us for an update on our video business from [Amazon Kindle VP] Peter Larsen." A background with a couch and a bowl of popcorn makes it clear that Amazon's sights are set squarely on the living room.
Amazon has been expanding into just about every possible media sales segment in the last few years, with one notable exception: console-style video games. If a filing with the Agência Nacional de Telecomunicações (read: the Brazilian version of the FCC) can be believed, Amazon is looking to close that gap in its product lineup. A full game controller, with media controls and Android-style navigation buttons, was spotted there by Zatz Not Funny.
It's not the latest and greatest, but the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 is still a capable device with a nice screen. You can pick up one of Amazon's Android-ish tablets on Woot right now for a mere $179.99. You better get on it, though. A good deal on Woot won't last all day.
Listen up, super-late Christmas shoppers: Best Buy has a pretty good deal going on seven-inch Kindle Fire HDXs today. You can score up to $82 off of various HDX models, and while they definitely won't arrive before Christmas (because, you know, that's today), they all have free shipping. Here's a full list of the options:
Imagine your perfect full-sized tablet. It's light, thin, has a gorgeous high-resolution display, multiple-day battery life, powerful speakers, and a cutting-edge processor. The Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 is all these things and more. From a hardware and engineering standpoint, it is truly a marvel. And, for a certain class of buyer, it may very well be that "perfect" full-sized tablet.
When I reviewed the Fire HD (7") last year, I came to a similar conclusion - I was wowed by the hardware (perhaps excepting the processor, which was a laggardly dual-core TI OMAP), but the software made it difficult to recommend for enthusiasts like you and me.
We almost certainly won't have hoverboards or flying DeLoreans in 2015, but Amazon is aiming to give us the next best thing: crazy-fast package delivery via flying drones. Yes, people, welcome to the future. Though there are obvious hurdles to overcome before these autonomous delivery robots become a reality, Amazon hopes that one day, "Prime Air vehicles will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today."
Amazon isn't letting Google run away with the bargain-priced tablet market just yet. It's offering $50 discounts on the Kindle Fire HD and Fire HDX 7 for Cyber Monday. That means you've got to jump on it soon to secure the deal.
The Fire HD is the tweaked version of last year's Fire with a dual-core 1.5GHz ARM chip and a 1280x800 resolution LCD. The 16GB version of this device usually sells for $169, but today it's $119.