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Old 09-29-2011, 03:25 PM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default Amazon Launches Four New Kindle Devices

It was expected that Amazon this week would announce a tablet-based Kindle, but the company surprised everyone by revamping its entire line-up. For starters, there's a brand-new entry-level model simply called "Kindle", priced at $79. It features a 6" ink pearl screen and supports WiFi, but has a rather paltry 2GB of on-board memory.


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Old 09-29-2011, 06:01 PM   #2
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These definitely look promising, I think Amazon will be able to go places with these.
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Old 09-29-2011, 09:45 PM   #3
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I lot of people noted that Jeff Bozos copied Steve Jobs style on stage, and more importantly, he pulled it off! I've seen a lot of people try to emulate Jobs, but Bezos is the first ever to pull it off! Good showing all the way around.

As far as the new devices go, well even though I love their own Amazon U.I., the hardware is mostly low spec, lacking many standard things and some are pointing out the apparent flaws, including:

7″ display: Amazon advertises that you can read magazines on Kindle Fire. But have you ever read a 4″ x 7″ magazine? Similar to the failed 7″ Samsung Galaxy Tab pockatable train wreck and also the 7″ BlackBerry Playbook, it’s unlikely to work well for certain type of content.
No mention of how to load your own music or movie (hopefully not through emailing)
Developers has to submit software to Amazon’s closed Appstore, where Amazon can change product prices to zero and gives a revenue share of 0. Most developers are unhappy with the unilateral arrangement.
Only “thousands” of titles in Amazon “Appstore”, which tries to confuse customers by naming it close to Apple’s successful “App Store”.
Runs locked down, customized of Android (unlikely to get security updates in any timely fashion)
No Google apps (none mentioned)
No “open” Android marketplace software
No camera or video recording
Copies 8GB storage of the 4 year old 2007 iPhone. Amazon lists that it holds “80 apps” or “10 movies”.
In addition, some are also noting:

Walled garden
No removable battery
No customization
No SD card
No stylus
Not open! Google openness rules!

No Bluetooth
No Wireless headphone support
No Volume buttons (needs multiple steps to change audio volume)
No Microphone
No Accelerometer? (None mentioned yet, although the more expensive 2010 Kindle DX has it)
No App Store (not Apple’s original version with over 300,000 titles)
No loading your own music?
No loading your own videos?

That said, the iPad doesn't include Flash, etc., but that hasn't stopped the iPad from selling 30,000,000 plus devices in under 2 years, and I don't think Amazon will have any trouble selling or making a success with its new tabs.

I've also noticed that a lot of people in the PC and Linux world judge devices bsimply what is needed, but rather based on two simple factors: the highest specs at the lowest cost!

Apparently, both Apple and Amazon believe otherwise. After all, what good is a car that can go 300 miles per hour when the speed limit is only 60? Apple is already doing more than fine; Amazon will do likewise even with their wall-garden and low spec devices.
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Old 09-29-2011, 11:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
I lot of people noted that Jeff Bozos copied Steve Jobs style on stage, and more importantly, he pulled it off! I've seen a lot of people try to emulate Jobs, but Bezos is the first ever to pull it off! Good showing all the way around.
That's a bit gratuitous. Not sure what it has to do with anything. And pretty sure it has nothing to do with reality. But "people"... will say anything these days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
As far as the new devices go, well even though I love their own Amazon U.I., the hardware is mostly low spec
Well, for some reason it's not selling at $400. But 200 less.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
Developers has to submit software to Amazon’s closed Appstore, where Amazon can change product prices to zero and gives a revenue share of 0. Most developers are unhappy with the unilateral arrangement.
Indeed. If Amazon decides to feature your app, you automatically wave your 20% of the list price. Which means something as brutal as this story.

But there's more to that. This is International Game Developers Association advisory, sent April this year to all members.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
Only “thousands” of titles in Amazon “Appstore”, which tries to confuse customers by naming it close to Apple’s successful “App Store”.
My thought on this particular issue: Not!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
Copies 8GB storage of the 4 year old 2007 iPhone
Oh crap! Bet they didn't know Apple had patented 8GB Storage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
Walled garden
No! Seriously? On a mobile device!? Getouttahere, you'r jokin'!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
No removable battery
No customization
No SD card
No stylus
Not open! Google openness rules!
3 first, totally agree. For these type of devices, regardless of price these features are not just nice to have. They are essential to make the device useful.

But "no stylus"? You do realize this is a multitouch screen here, don't you?

And "Google openness"? I'm not sure I understand. Android license explicitly permits derivative works to not commit back to the main project and essentially generate a new product. It's the Apache 2.0 license. Google itself released the closed-source Honeycomb, which is a fork of the Android project.

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No loading your own music?
No loading your own videos?
What do you mean? Do you realize that the 8GB storage is just the device physical storage space and that it is in fact meant to use Amazon Cloud as the main storage resource?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan View Post
That said, the iPad doesn't include Flash, etc., but that hasn't stopped the iPad from selling 30,000,000 plus devices in under 2 years, and I don't think Amazon will have any trouble selling or making a success with its new tabs.
I find it funny that you always put a little bit of Apple in everything you say about other companies.
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Old 09-30-2011, 10:20 AM   #5
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That's a bit gratuitous.

I find it funny that you always put a little bit of Apple in everything you say about other companies.

Frist of all, I simply outlined what other sites have said, including major sites such as Gizmodo that referred to Jeff Bozos as Steve Jobs:

http://gizmodo.com/5844863/jeff-bezo...new-steve-jobs

or Atlantic Wire:

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/techn...ve-jobs/43119/

I could go on to list the Wall Street Journal, NYT, or Fortune Magazine, etc., etc., so why call me out on this one? I'm sure that it wouldn't matter what I say, because your just going to try to find something wrong with it anyway, regardless.

If I mention Apple a lot here its simply because TechGage is a tech site and Apple, believe it or not, just happens to be a tech company, the biggest one on earth, and one that now dwarfs even mighty Microsoft, so why shouldn't I mention it?

I'm sure your a fan of someone, or something, just as I'm a fan of Apple, or Mercedes, or Christian Rock, or Deutscher Schalger (German rock), but you'll won't hear me talk about them here, but if you want to talk cars, etc..... boy, oh boy, I'll surely mention Mercedees, BMW and Porsche as much as I would Apple. I'm simply a passionate person, so what's the big deal?

Apple is a great company, but trust me they can be as big of a 'you-know-what' as anyone else. However, I also believe in giving credit where credit is due, and as much as I like Amazon's new devices, what I don't like is all of this.... 'It's going to kill Apple and the iPad' foolishness. Of course, then again, maybe it might, but what I don't understand is why it seems that it's ok to say that a person likes this or that other company, but as soon as you say something great about Apple your automatically labelled a fanboy, a Mactard, etc., etc. Seriously, doesn't that seem just a wee bit childish to you?

You seem like a very intelligent person, and I'm that sure you are, which is why I also find it rather 'funny' that you find it 'funny' that an Apple fan likes to bring up Apple a lot, a great tech company, on a great tech site like Techgage?
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Old 09-30-2011, 10:44 AM   #6
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Fair enough.

Anyways, my point was that the Kindle Fire really isn't competing for a place alongside full-fledged tablets. I cannot possibly compare it to the iPad, Android or WP8 devices other than as a means to point exactly that. The price itself is revealing of the device limitations. But also it approaches tablet computing in a vastly different way. Most notably in my opinion, the lack of email and PIM features. The device is very appealing as a glorified Kindle ebook reader that happens to include access to an app store.
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Old 09-30-2011, 11:39 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Fair enough.

Anyways, my point was that the Kindle Fire really isn't competing for a place alongside full-fledged tablets. I cannot possibly compare it to the iPad, Android or WP8 devices other than as a means to point exactly that. The price itself is revealing of the device limitations. But also it approaches tablet computing in a vastly different way. Most notably in my opinion, the lack of email and PIM features. The device is very appealing as a glorified Kindle ebook reader that happens to include access to an app store.
I agree 100% on the above, and I believe that the current Amazon devices are nothing more than a stepping stones to bigger, better and more compelling devices in the future.

I recently had the idea that there would only be two real tablets around, namely Windows 8 and the iPad, but now I'm beginning to think that there'll be three: the iPad, Windows 8 and now a future Amazone tablet, at least that's what I'm hoping for, so my fingers are crossed on that one.
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Old 09-30-2011, 01:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I agree 100% on the above, and I believe that the current Amazon devices are nothing more than a stepping stones to bigger, better and more compelling devices in the future.
This I am not too sure of. I might be off here, but it seems that Amazon likes hitting the "budget" price area as much as possible, and for the most part, all of its Kindles have been priced-right. The Fire, despite being a color tablet, capable of playing video and even some games, still just retails for a mere $200.

The device isn't as full-featured as some out there, but at this price, what's here is excellent. I am just not sure Amazon wants to get into the tablet market where it will compete head-to-head with Apple, Samsung and others, because it's a truly competitive one, and so far, no company has been able to match the success of Apple.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMan
I recently had the idea that there would only be two real tablets around, namely Windows 8 and the iPad, but now I'm beginning to think that there'll be three: the iPad, Windows 8 and now a future Amazone tablet, at least that's what I'm hoping for, so my fingers are crossed on that one.
Not an Android fan, huh?
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Old 09-30-2011, 02:16 PM   #9
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Yup. Amazon moving full steam into tablet computing is very unlikely in my opinion too. They'd first sell them on Amazon than you'd see them interesting in putting money in such an embryonic market.

Maybe when the market stabilizes and the players are more or less arranged with Apple not dominating the market anymore, but sharing a slice of the pie, prices drop enough for side-business to contemplate investment. But for quite a while this will remain a game only companies that make computing their core business can afford to enter.
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:15 AM   #10
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I'd agree in that I don't believe the device is being positioned as a direct iPad competitor. That's why I made my first post, because the Kindle Fire can be a huge success regardless of whatever the iPad does.

The Kindle Fire is being tied into Amazon in quite a few ways, and can turn into quite a content delivery system for more than just Kindle ebooks and Amazon store browsing. Amazon not only made the market for ebooks with the Kindle, but they have developed into one of the largest alternatives to iTunes for music, and they are still actively expanding their movie streaming services as well. The Fire is a good tie-in for all of that.

We have seen what happened when the HP Touchpad hit $99, it instantly became the 2nd largest selling pad overnight and still demand was so high from stores to restock that HP made another batch of 'em. A $200 Kindle Fire is by far the closest thing to that, and it even includes a month of Amazon Prime on top of that. I think the price and positioning is pretty close to optimal for the Fire to be a successful device independent of the iPad, or any knockoffs in general.
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:36 AM   #11
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I tend to miss you, Kougar.
You need to increase the frequency of your visits. I don't want to her about any excuses

...

The one move I honestly didn't get from Amazon is the non availability in Europe at launch. And no immediate plans for availability. They are so hung up on their cloud services data protection schema (the Silk browser isn't compatible with European data-protection laws) that they are even ready to forego the one market where the iPad is not the king of the hill. Exactly the market that could easily boost the Kindle Fire adoption is the one they aren't doing. All, seemingly, because they don't want to tight the data-protection mechanisms around the Silk browser (or just do something like Microsoft has done with the E versions of some of its software).
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