After Barnes and Noble came out with the Nook Color, it was already expected that Amazon will release its own tablet. After all, the two companies have been in competition in the e-reader arena and breaking into the tablet market will naturally be followed by the other.
Such is the case with Amazon when it came out with the Kindle Fire. With this tablet, Amazon was able to grasp what people really want from their tablets – entertainment. And the Kindle Fire did entertain us. We took the tablet for a spin and we liked what we saw. We have the nitty-gritty on Amazon’s first foray to the tablet market so read on to get acquainted with the Kindle Fire.
In terms of its design and construction, the Kindle Fire is a solid little brick that measures 190 x 120 x 11 mm and weighs in at 413 grams. The tablet is definitely solidly-built and it feels substantial with the heft it packs but not too heavy that using it for extended periods will leave your hands feeling strained and fatigued.
Under the hood, the Kindle Fire may not be a speed beast but the tablet can certainly hold its own when talking about its specs sheet. The tablet is a dual-core affair with its Texas Instruments OMAP4430 chipset controlling every aspect of its operation from its circuit board. This chipset brings along a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor which gives the tablet 1GHz of computing goodness. Working with the processor to give the tablet a fast and powerful performance is the tablet’s 512 MB of RAM which basically lets you multitask on the Kindle Fire without lags and stutters getting in the way.
A PowerVR SGX540 graphics processing unit on the other hand ensures that you get to enjoy you games, movies and apps in high-definition graphics while the tablet’s 8GB of internal memory leaves you enough space for about 80 apps in addition to 10 films or 800 songs of 6000 movies. Despite not having a memory expansion slot, the Kindle Fire gets you free cloud storage for all your Amazon content so storage is not really an issue here.
The Kindle Fire has been endowed with a 7-inch IPS LCD panel made from Gorilla Glass. It packs a resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels and is able to deliver 16 million colors in high resolution. In short, your movies and other multimedia content come alive on the stunning display of the tablet with the display’s great reproduction of color and exceptional viewing angles.
As for its operating system, the Kindle Fire runs a highly-customized version of Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Sad to say, the tablet doesn’t have access to the Android Market but the Amazon App Store is definitely a worthy replacement. The tablet also comes with its own email client believe it or not and has a proprietary web browser that makes use of the EC2 servers of Amazon for faster page loads and better browsing experience.
Overall, the Kindle Fire from Amazon is a capable full-featured tablet that may have its share of shortcomings but at its price point of just $199, I’m betting people would be more than willing to look the other way and enjoy the range of offerings that the Kindle Fire has.