[E-GEAR]: Review: Amazon Kindle Fire
(Editor's Note: Special thanks to Book Business' sister publication, E-Gear, for this review of the new Kindle Fire)
A survey released in mid-November by ChangeWave asked consumers their preferences when it came to tablet computers for the holidays.
Beyond finding an overall explosion in interest for tablets, the survey found that of consumers planning to purchase a tablet in the next 90 days, 65 percent planned to buy an Apple iPad, while 22 percent wanted an Amazon Kindle Fire. No other tablet garnered more than four percent.
That sounds about right.
After it was rumored for nearly a year and announced in September, Amazon's first-ever tablet device, the Kindle Fire, finally arrived in early November. The 7-inch device, a sort of hybrid of a Kindle and a smaller Android tablet, is seen as the first major challenger to Apple's iPad in the Great Tablet Wars of 2011.
The Fire does a lot of things very well, and if the survey above is any indication, it will likely find itself the most successful non-iPad tablet computer. But it's still quite a bit behind the iPad- and there's probably going to be a new iPad before long.
Amazon is clearly counting on the massive brand loyalty attached to the Kindle name, on top of a price point ($199) much lower than those of both the cheapest iPad and earlier versions of the Kindle, as well as the majority of available tablets.
In addition, Amazon has fully integrated the new tablet with its cloud services, so those who use their Amazon and Amazon Prime accounts as a hub of things they download will have an easy interface with the Kindle Fire. This works much the same way the iPad links up with the iTunes and App Stores. True, most Android tablets can link up to the user's Google account and all the attendant cloud services, but most consumers don't use Google to purchase things the way they do books from Amazon, music from Apple or video content from both.