It was already expected that Amazon will release a bigger tablet, purportedly called Kindle Fire 2, in order to compete with the bigger tablet iPad. Today, after about a year of Kindle Fire announcement, Amazon introduced their new tablet line up. Interested how the flagship model Kindle Fire HD compare to other tablets?
Last year I blogged about Kindle comparison chart to guide users in buying Kindle Fire. I have updated it now so you will see the new Kindle Fire HD comparison charts below.
Kindle Comparison Chart (all variety)
There are 7 new Kindle models announced today. In Kindle Fire HD family, there are 4 — namely the Kindle Fire (2nd gen), Kindle Fire HD 7″, Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE Wireless.
Kindle Fire (2nd gen) and Kindle Fire HD 7″ will be available starting September 14 while Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ variants will be available only on November 20 so you better pre-order now to reserve your place in line.
If you are not sure what is the best Kindle for you, use the chart below to compare all the latest Kindle models. At the time of this writing the older models, Kindle Touch and Kindle Touch 3G are already unavailable as they are already succeeded by Kindle Paperwhite and Kindle Paperwhite 3G respectively. Amazon touts that the Paperwhite models are the world’s most advanced e-readers as it offers high-resolution, high contrast, built-in light and 8-week long battery life.
Interesting enough, the good old Kindle Keyboard and Kindle Keyboard 3G are still available and not refreshed or upgraded this time.
Let’s move forward on the top of the line model Kindle Fire HD and compare it to the premium tablet brands in the market.
Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ vs. iPad vs. Galaxy Note 10.1 vs. Microsoft Surface
In terms of screen size, Amazon Kindle Fire HD is only 8.9 inches diagonal, which makes it smaller than 0.8 inches compared to Apple iPad’s 9.7 inches. In fact, Kindle Fire HD is a bit smaller than Apple iPad (3rd gen), Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and the upcoming Microsoft Surface.
To think that Kindle Fire HD is only 8.8mm thick, Amazon must have targeted iPad 2 which is also 8.8mm.
When iPad 3rd gen was released its 2048×1536 resolution seemed unnecessary. However, knowing Apple is a trend-setter I have predicted that consumers will look for more personal computing devices with better display. And now, here is the Kindle Fire HD with 1920×1200 resolution packed in 8.9-inch IPS LCD. Many video enthusiasts should be happy because it has 16:9 screen ratio suitable for widescreen movie playback.
In retrospect, if you think Apple’s retina display is overrated then how about the latest trend in HD TV? The new wave of digital TVs are already showcasing 4K resolution. Who knows how soon 4k will be the standard screen resolution?
According to Jeff Bezos, “We want to make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices.”
Price is one of the best differentiating factor in buying Kindle Fire HD and perhaps this alone can persuade you to buy Kindle Fire HD. As you can see in the Kindle comparison chart, it shows that the 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD starts at $299. That is a whopping $200 difference compared to the 3rd gen iPad. Even with the extra $200 change you can still buy the entry-level Kindle Fire HD 7″ which starts at $199.
While Amazon can’t compete with the number of apps in Apple Apps Store, it compensates for the vast library of movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, books, audiobooks and popular apps that users can buy and consume. There is unlimited cloud storage for all your purchased Amazon content.
It is a little disappointing that Amazon did not even try to put a decent back camera in Kindle Fire HD. This reinforced the notion that all Kindle Fire devices are made for consuming Amazon products and not for producing content. My understanding here is that Amazon wants its consumers to finish reading books or complete watching TV series and audiobooks instead of allowing them to use Instagram to take pictures which doesn’t add any benefit to Amazon at all. If you get pass this small limitation then everything in Kindle Fire HD is perfect.
Even without a back camera, the front-facing “HD” camera can be used for free Skype calls and audiophiles will surely enjoy the Dolby audio virtual surround sound.
Further more, Amazon is introducing Kindle Freetime which allows you to control your kid’s access to Kindle Fire HD tablet. As a parent you can limit time for reading books, watching videos, using apps, etc.
New users also get one month free access to Amazon Prime for unlimited, instant streaming of thousands of popular movies and TV shows.
I hope the 2 Kindle comparison charts above helped you compare the current Kindle model line up and other existing tablets.
Do you think Amazon Kindle Fire HD hits all the sweet spots? Is it a true Apple iPad contender? I am interested how Apple will respond to this. In several days, Apple night announce a new device. Will it include an Apple iPad mini? How about Google? Nexus 7 is not looking good when you put it beside a Kindle Fire HD.
How can you not love Amazon?