Amazon Fire 2015: Best Cheap Tablet Just Made the Competition Very Nervous
On September 30th, Amazon is set to release it’s new Amazon Fire Tablet, and the competition is paying very close attention. The new Fire, with it’s 7″ display, 8GB of internal storage and loads of special offers has one more incredible feature…it’s price tag. Amazon is releasing this latest offering in their Kindle family at the unbelievable price of just $49.99. That’s right. A full-feature tablet that carries the reputable Fire name…for less than $50. And with a host of Fire discountsincluded, Kindle users can now purchase five tablets…and get one free. Free. No cost. Nada. Zip. No other tablet manufacturer has offered anything even close to this…but honestly, it’s just more of the great products and services that we’ve come to expect from Amazon.
Tell me more about Fire Tablet…
Amazon’s new Fire Tablet is probably not going to revolutionize the way we do tablets however it does have some unexpected features that make it a contender in the market. Tech specs include…
- Up to 7 hours of battery life, meaning you can take your Kindle along as you go about your life.
- 128 GB of potential storage. The Amazon Fire tablet has a micro SD slot that allows you to expand your storage and keep your videos, photos, movies, games, books and documents on your tablet so that they are where you need them, when you need them.
- Quad core processor. Four 1.3 GHz cores mean that your apps, movies and games load lightening fast and keep you moving at the speed of life. Because ain’t nobody got time for slow internet!
- Vivid 7″ IPS display. Your new Amazon Fire tablet comes with a 7″, 1024 x 600 IPS display that provides a crystal clear with brighter colors and whiter whites. And the combination of IPS technology and an advanced polarizing filter means that you can enjoy a solid viewing experience from any angle.
- 2 MP rear-facing camera. Whether it’s your son’s first soccer goal or your little girl’s first recital, you want a camera that captures the moment perfectly. And if you want the whole moment, the Fire tablet is capable of recording up to 720p HD video, so you won’t miss a thing. For Skype calls with your mother, the front-facing VGA camera allows you to keep in touch and see those smiling faces!
- Durability for your life. The Amazon Fire tablet is built to withstand all of the crazy that you can throw at it. They’ve tossed and tumbled it around for you, and it is up to 2X stronger than the iPad Air 2.
- Fire OS 5 “Bellini” operating system. The homescreen features pages dedicated to apps, books, games and so on, meaning you have instant access to the content that you use most.
- Other Exclusive Features that Other Tablets miss
Introducing Some New Fire Features
Word Runner: Word Runner is a system designed to help you read faster and more accurately. The basic premise is that by keeping your eye focused on the center of the page and only showing one word at a time, you increase your comprehension and minimize distractions.
- Pros: the ability to set your own reading speed, as well as focus on one word at a time.
- Cons: if you are a block reader, like to reread paragraphs or sections, or need to visually scan the material to grasp concepts, then this is not the program for you. It also takes some adjusting to, and is not really suitable for reading for pleasure.
Amazon Underground. The Amazon Underground is a new app designed to allow users to download premium apps for free. “Actually free” apps have no in-app purchases, which will appeal to consumers who are tired of being bombarded with offers inside of their favorite games and apps. Amazon pays developers based on how long you actually use the app, which is a concept similar to their Kindle Unlimited program. The app still has paid apps and “fremium” apps, so the only real addition to the program are the “actually free” apps.
- Pros: popular apps like Angry Birds, Frozen Free Fall and OfficeSuite Professional 8 are already available, and more apps are being added daily.
- Cons: The app can only be downloaded from the Amazon store. Users who are familiar with Apple products will need to reeducate themselves on the Android system, which may take a bit of time.
ASAP (Advanced streaming and prediction). ASAP will automatically make your favorite TV shows and movies available to you, based on your viewing habits.
- Pros: by reducing buffering time, Amazon guarantees that your favorite programs and movies will be available to you almost instantly.
- Cons: some users have reported a spike in data usage–as much as 80GB a day in some cases. Amazon has investigated the issues, and found that a screensaver is actually to blame. Amazon is currently working on an update that will fix the problem, , and in the meantime, users can turn off the screensaver to avoid a data drain.
Q: I already have a Kindle Paperwhite. Why should I invest in the Fire tablet?
The Kindle Paperwhite is a fantastic device — there’s no denying that. And if all you are going to do is read, and you’re fine with a black-and-white interface, then you have exactly what you need. But if you are looking for a new experience…a way to not only read your favorite books and magazines but also to interact in a whole new way, then you need to seriously consider the new Amazon Fire tablet.
The Fire tablet, with it’s full-color display, give you more out of the magazines and books that you enjoy. Full color illustrations and interactive features are just two of the many advantages to using the Fire over the Paperwhite. And while the Paperwhite does give you the option to store photos and documents, the Fire tablet allows you to do so in full color…so that picture of your baby’s first birthday will be as fresh and vibrant as the day you snapped it.
Q: So what are the pros and cons to the new Fire tablet?
- Easily, the main advantage to the new Fire is the cost. At just under $50, this is the most affordable tablet on the market. Parents who purchase one for their children will not need to be as concerned about the possibility of breaking or ruining it, as the price tag means that it can be affordably replaced.
- Size. The smaller Fire tablet is designed to fit easily into a purse, backpack or even pocket, so you can take it with you when you’re out and about.
- A month of Amazon Prime free with purchase. The wildly popular Prime program runs $99 a year, but you get a free month when you buy a new Fire tablet.
- Access to the Kindle Owners Lending Library, thousands of Kindle books and magazines available for purchase, and the Prime Video and Music programs.
- The ability to download videos to your device, allowing you to watch them even if you don’t have WiFi.
- With only 8GB of internal storage, the tablet is limited in scope. Fortunately the micro SD expansion slot allows for up to 128 GB of added memory.
- The mono speaker may make it difficult to hear a video in a crowded setting–for example on the train during your work commute.
- This is not a “bells and whistles” tablet. The screen resolution is just 1024 x 600, not outstanding or anything to write home about by any stretch of the imagination. That being said, for a $50 tablet, it has enough features that do stand out to make it a worthwhile purchase for someone looking for a fun tablet to read and play games on.
Special purchase price: Right now as part of the rollout, Amazon is offering six tablets for the price of five. While most people don’t really need six tablets, this deal will be popular as the holiday season rolls around, and also has potential for teachers looking to incorporate technology into their classroom at a reasonable cost.
Conclusion: Fire is the One for You
Amazon has built a reputation by providing affordable electronic devices with loads of content available. They have never stated that they want to offer the best technology, but rather are banking on the consumer purchasing their vast array of movies, books, music and goods and services, hopefully using their Amazon device.
For the money, the Amazon Fire tablet is a decent tablet and would make an excellent device for someone who is looking for a basic, no-frills tablet that they can use for entertainment. And at just $50, buyers feel secure in purchasing the device for children without the constant fear of breakage. It is, in the humble opinion of this reviewer, an excellent tablet for the price.
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