Google may have given up on tablets, but Amazon is still holding on for dear life. The company's Fire tablets have always been about providing value to customers for low price points, and right now Woot is offering some of the lowest prices around on older generation Fire tablets — including the 2018 Fire HD 8 for just $49.99.
Amazon's Fire tablets rarely receive major OS updates, mostly because they are sold as simple media consumption devices, and Netflix or TikTok doesn't need Android 10 to function. However, the company has now surpassed everyone's low expectations by delivering Android 9 Pie to two of its older tablets.
Amazon's Fire tablets are some of the cheapest Android tablets you can get. They might not be the most powerful or attractive looking devices, but they're great for consuming content in the Amazon ecosystem. The newest models were released earlier this year, and we like the 8-inch version. The Kids Edition has handy features like child-proof casing and simple parental controls, and now it's been marked down to the lowest price yet of $89.99.
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Amazon's Fire tablets are popular for one, simple reason: they're really, really cheap. But what happens when you make a slightly-less-cheap Fire tablet? That's the question Amazon sought to answer with the Fire HD 8 Plus, a very-slightly-better version of the new Amazon Fire HD 8 last month, which was already a decent upgrade from previous Fire tablets in both hardware and software.
With the HD 8 Plus, Amazon attempts to bring some quality of life improvements like more RAM and wireless charging—a rarity in any tablet—to the table. Combined with the wireless charging stand that essentially turns the HD 8 Plus into a detachable Echo Show, Amazon has what to date is probably the best version of a combination tablet smart display (even if it's not amazing as either).
Amazon's latest refresh of the Fire HD 8 is on sale for the first time in both its regular and kids editions. To top that off, the platform is also discounting a few other Fire tablets from the days of yore.
I think it's fair to say that Amazon's lineup of Fire tablets don't have the best reputation, particularly in the tech community. Fire tablets have historically paired bottom-of-the-barrel hardware with outdated versions of Android, and Amazon's extensive changes to the operating system aren't widely loved. The tablets also don't ship with the Google Play Store, though that at least is a quick fix.
Amazon has been selling the same Fire HD 8 since 2018, but the company finally released a new model last month. It brings most of the improvements from last year's Fire HD 10 to the 8-inch lineup, including USB Type-C and faster performance, and I think it's a pretty great buy for $90.
The Fire HD 8 is one of Amazon's most popular hardware products, but it has been overdue for a hardware refresh. Now the company has finally released a new version of the Fire HD 8, and there are even some features you don't normally see in a tablet — like Qi wireless charging.
Amazon's Fire tablets are media consumption devices first and foremost, and given their extremely low prices, it's perhaps not surprising that they rarely receive major OS updates. The last Fire tablet to receive a system upgrade beyond minor features was the 2014 Fire HD 6, which was updated from FireOS 4.x to 5.x. However, it seems like Amazon's entire line of 7th-generation Fire tablets is now receiving an update to Nougat.
Tablets are a niche market these days, but Amazon's Fire series remains popular for people who read a lot of eBooks, or watch of Netflix and want something larger than their phone. Competitively priced at $80, the Fire 8 is already a bargain. Order two of them before March 16th, though, and you'll get $50 off. Two tablets for $110 isn't a deal to be sniffed at, so if you're looking for a cheap tablet and feel like getting another one for a friend, this is the deal for you.