So, the big news has finally broken and we now know all there is to know about the new Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet. If anything, it exceeds much of the high expectation surrounding the initial hype. Everything from the drastic undercutting of competition pricing to the well thought out theme of the interface seem calculated to dominate a currently scattered industry. With something like this available, even the iPad might have more to worry about than previously expected. That said, there are some other things going on here that aren’t entirely apparent at first glance.
A couple things go a long way to guaranteeing that Kindle Fire customers will remain Amazon customers as long as they own their device, for example. For one, while nothing says that you definitely cannot import content from other sources, and indeed it seems almost inevitable that you will be able to do so, the integrated storage is fairly limited and only Amazon content will be given unlimited storage space on their cloud servers. Will it be possible to stream content, especially video, over your home network to the tablet? That remains to be seen.
We also have to assume that a great deal of the functionality, as far as content access and even web browsing go, would be lost with the rooting of the device for whatever reason. Amazon has been concerned enough with piracy in the past to make this something they will have taken into consideration, even if it means that some legitimate users will be inconveniences by it.
For your average user, still not really a bad deal. You have access to movies, music, magazines, and even books, all at a reasonable price. The Amazon Prime functionality becomes almost mandatory to get the most out of things, but it provides value far beyond its cost. Kindle Fire’s even light enough for one-handed use and can multi-task enough to play you music while you read or browse the web.
What would have made it even better? In the future people are definitely hoping for a larger viewing area, expandable storage, optional 3G capabilities, and longer battery life. Some of that fell to the side in order to allow the Kindle Fire to be priced so low. Some of it, like the battery life, just isn’t reasonable yet. Of course if we’re speculating about hardware that does not exist yet then I suppose full color, low power, non-backlit displays would be nice. These things will happen when the tech is available, I would assume. Better to do it right with what is mature right this minute than jump in too soon.
Should this take off, and I think we can all be pretty sure that it will after today’s reveal, expect to be seeing a larger, more powerful Kindle Tablet on the horizon. Amazon supposedly spent time and manpower getting a 10″ tablet designed already, and they’ll need it to top this offering. The competition will need some time to adjust, in the meantime. It’s unlikely we’ll see such an affordable yet functional tablet from anybody else in the near future.